Gunmen kill local Shiite Muslim leader in Pak | india | Hindustan Times
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Gunmen kill local Shiite Muslim leader in Pak

india Updated: Feb 14, 2007 15:03 IST

Gunmen riding on a motorcycle killed a local Shiite Muslim leader in northwestern Pakistan today before fleeing, police said.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the slaying of Jawad Hussain, 45, in Dera Ismail Khan, a main town in the North West Frontier Province.

Aslam Khattak, an area police chief, said they had transported Hussain's body to a hospital, and officers were still investigating.

Dera Ismail Khan has been the site of attacks on local leaders from minority Shiite sect in recent months.

In December, gunmen shot and killed a Shiite university professor Nizakat Ali, and police at the time had suspected involvement of an outlawed Sunni militant group.

Although most majority Sunni and minority Shiite Muslims live peacefully together, extremists on both sides often target each other's leaders and activists.

The Sunni-Shiite schism over the true heir to Islam's Prophet Muhammad dates back to the seventh century.

Dera Ismail Khan is 290 kilometers southwest of the capital, Islamabad.