IS guns down 45 Shia Muslims in Karachi bus attack
Kalashnikov-wielding IS militants donning police uniforms on Wednesday gunned down 45 Shia Ismaili Muslims, shooting them in the head as they attacked their bus in Pakistan’s volatile Karachi city as the dreaded terror outfit claimed carrying out their first attack in the region. In the latest cold-blooded sectarian violence targetting the minority Shia community, six to eight motorbike-borne assailants opened fire indiscriminately at the pink bus ferrying over 60 people to a community centre to stop it, police said.
They first opened fire on the bus just near the Dow Medical College around 9.30 am and then entered the bus when it stopped at <g data-gr-id="32">Safoora</g> <g data-gr-id="33">Chorangi</g>, Gulistan-e-Johar, a relatively deserted area on the outskirts of the city. The attackers killed 45 people - 26 men and 17 women - and wounded more than 20 others before fleeing from the scene, police said.
“It was a targeted attack,” Sindh Police Inspector General Ghulam Haider Jamali told reporters. A senior police official said the attackers entered the bus and shot the passengers in the head. A blood-stained pamphlet of <g data-gr-id="26">terrorist</g> group Islamic State was recovered from the scene, according to a police official.
Later, the Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the grisly attack and said they gunned down 43 people. “Thanks be to Allah, 43 apostates were killed and around 30 were wounded in an attack carried out by Islamic State soldiers on a bus transporting Shiite Ismaili infidels in the city of Karachi,” the extremist group said in a statement posted on jihadist Twitter accounts. It was the first official claim of responsibility by the IS leadership of an attack in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region.
The passenger bus run by a welfare service of the Ismaili community was taking men, women and children to the city centre for jobs and schooling from a low cost housing society when six unidentified men on three motorcycles stopped the bus after firing on it and then entered <g data-gr-id="24">into </g>the bus and shot dead 45 passengers.
According to a woman survivor, the attackers stopped the bus and then entered from the rear door and initially targeted the driver. She added that the occupants of the bus thought that robbers had embarked on the vehicle.