A Pakistani paramilitary soldier and local residents gather at the site of a bomb blast in Quetta, Pakistan, January 10, 2013.
The World Assembly of Islamic Awakening has strongly condemned the massacre of Shia Muslims in a recent bombing in the southwestern Pakistani city of Quetta.
“In order to fulfill their schemes and worldly interests, Islam’s sworn enemies devise dangerous plots to take control of the political and economic arteries of the Islamic world,” the World Assembly said in a statement issued on Sunday.
Reportedly 84 people were killed in a bomb attack targeting Shia Muslims in the southwestern Pakistani city of Quetta, located 700 kilometers (435 miles) southwest of the capital Islamabad, on Saturday.
According to the police, most of the victims were Hazara Shias. Burnt school bags and books of schoolchildren were scattered everywhere, witnesses said. Nearly 200 people were also wounded in the attack.
The statement by the World Assembly of Islamic Awakening further said the enemies plotted to sow discord among Muslims in order to achieve their ominous objectives through the policy of “divide and rule.”
“We have witnessed a dramatic increase in extremist terrorism in Pakistan over the past few years,” the statement said.
It added that the spread of Islamic Awakening in the region, the failure of the US plan for a new Middle East, the defeat that Israel suffered in the war on Gaza, and the Western countries’ failure in overthrowing the Syrian government have frustrated the enemies and they seek revenge for their failures by massacring the innocent people of Quetta.
Violence has escalated against Shia Muslims in different parts of Pakistan in recent months. Since the beginning of 2012, hundreds of Shias have been killed in the country.
On February 1, some 19 people were killed and dozens wounded when a motorcycle packed with explosives exploded near a mosque in the town of Hangu in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province.
On January 10, nearly 130 people were killed and many others injured in a wave of deadly attacks targeting both Pakistani security guards and civilians, including Shia Muslims, in the country.
Shias make up about 20 percent of Pakistan’s population of over 180 million.