Doctor from Ahmadi minority shot dead in Pakistan

AP News
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Posted: Jun 21, 2016 1:03 PM

KARACHI, Pakistan (AP) — Gunmen in Pakistan have shot and killed a homeopathic doctor from the Ahmadi minority in the southern port city of Karachi, police said Tuesday.

The attackers stormed into Abdul Khaliq's clinic late Monday and shot him in the head, police officer Rao Anwar said.

The Ahmadi faith was established in the Indian subcontinent in the 19th century by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, who followers believe was a prophet. Pakistan's parliament declared Ahmadis non-Muslims in 1974, and they have repeatedly been targeted by Islamic extremists.

Another Ahmadi was shot and killed in the same Karachi neighborhood in May, Anwar said, adding that police were looking into whether the two incidents were related.

Authorities took two local TV shows off the air Friday for airing discussions about the Ahmadi community and demanded they publicly apologize for their "irresponsible" treatment of sensitive issues.

On one of the shows, Pakistani actor Hamza Ali Abbasi asked religious scholars whether the state had the right to declare a community non-Muslim, prompting a backlash by Islamic extremists on social media. On the other TV show, a cleric criticized Abbasi, saying "if the law doesn't decide (his fate), Muslims will."

Mohammad Tahir, a spokesman for the media regulator, said both channels had agreed to apologize on air, and that both programs would then be allowed to resume.

Karachi, Pakistan's commercial hub, has long been the scene of ethnic and political violence. On Tuesday, gunmen in plainclothes used a police vehicle to kidnap the son of a provincial judge from an upscale part of the city, said police officer Mushtaq Mahar. He declined to comment on who might have been behind the abduction.