GILGIT: All the six districts of Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) remained in the grip extreme tension and mourning on Wednesday on the occasion of funeral of 18 members of Shia community who were killed in Kohistan on Tuesday.
Collective funeral prayers of 11 victims of the tragedy were held at Imamia Jamia Masjid Gilgit and the bodies were later sent to their native areas for burial. To maintain law and order curfew was imposed in Gilgit after 12pm. Local residents were restricted to their houses while roads presented a deserted look.
All the government and private offices, educational institutions and business centres across Gilgit-Baltistan remained closed on Wednesday as three day mourning has been announced. Security in the six districts of Gilgit-Baltistan was put on red alert.
All exit and entry points to Gilgit were completely sealed on the directives of the Deputy Commissioner and Section 144 has also been imposed banning assembly of four or more persons and the display of arms. Educational institutions have also been closed in Gilgit for three days as a precautionary measure in the wake of a possible violent reaction by the victim community members.
Ahmad Marwat, claiming to be the commander of the militant group, Jundallah, claimed responsibility for the attack. Survivors said seven to eight killers were involved in the attack.
Violence erupted in Gilgit as a result of the sectarian attack, claiming at least one life. The deceased has been identified as Ubaidullah, who was shot dead near the public school roundabout in the Joeyal area. —INP
APP adds: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon strongly condemned Tuesday’s attack in Kohistan in which gunmen killed 18 people after ordering them off a bus on the Islamabad-Gilgit route.
The secretary-general extended his heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims of the ‘abhorrent attack,’ as well as to the government of Pakistan, according to a statement issued by his spokesperson.
“The United Nations stands by Pakistan in its efforts to combat the scourge of terrorism and extremism, which continues to claim the lives of so many Pakistanis,” the statement added.