Two LeJ militants executed for sectarian murder in Pak

Two Lashkar-e-Jhangvi militants, convicted for the sectarian murder of a Shiite doctor, were hanged here on Tuesday, taking the number of those executed in Pakistan since it lifted a moratorium on death penalty to 22.

PTI| Updated: Feb 03, 2015, 15:27 PM IST

Karachi: Two Lashkar-e-Jhangvi militants, convicted for the sectarian murder of a Shiite doctor, were hanged here on Tuesday, taking the number of those executed in Pakistan since it lifted a moratorium on death penalty to 22.

Atta Ullah and Muhammad Azam linked with Lashkar-e- Jhangvi (LeJ) outfit that regularly targets minority Shiites were hanged in Central Jail Karachi early this morning.

They were convicted for killing of Dr Ali Raza here in 2001 and given death sentence by an anti-terrorist court in 2004.

Later, their death sentence was upheld by the higher courts and their mercy appeal was rejected by Pakistan's President.

Their executions had not been carried out due to the moratorium on the death penalty by Pakistan.

The government ended the self-imposed moratorium after Taliban militants stormed a school in Peshawar in December and killed 150 people, including 136 students.

Pakistan has suffered from a rising tide of sectarian violence in recent years with extremist Sunni Muslim groups such as the LeJ regularly targeting the minority Shiites.

The latest sectarian attack took place on Friday, when a suicide bomber killed 61 people at a Shiite mosque in the Shikarpur district of the Sindh Province.

It was the deadliest attack targeting Shiites in Pakistan since February 2013, when 89 were killed in a market bombing in Quetta

The latest executions have taken the number of those executed so far since the moratorium to 22. There are more than 8,000 death row prisoners in the country.