Suspected Taliban militants slaughtered six people in Pakistan’s coastal city of Karachi on Tuesday for visiting a Sufi shrine, police said. The Taliban, who follow a very strict interpretation of Sunni Islam, consider shrine worshipping and grave worshipping as un-Islamic and have mounted attacks on the country’s Shia, moderate Sunni Muslims and Christian minorities. They claimed responsibility for slaying the six people in a note found by police near the bodies. Senior police officer Amir Farooqui said the victims were kidnapped before being tortured to death with a sharp-edged dagger, which was found at the crime scene. It is reproted that the assailants also desecrated the shrine before fleeing. “Three of the dead were custodians of the Hazrat Ayub Shah Shrine, while the remaining three came from various parts of the city,” said Farooqi. “A note was found by the bodies in which the banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan has claimed responsibility for the killings.” The note warned that those who visit the shrines would suffer the same fate. The police have detained chief custodian Juman Shah for questioning. The latest killings come 10 days after five friends, including two military officers, were found shot dead at another Sufi shrine located in the middle of a water lake in Thatta district some 130 kms from Karachi. Police are yet to make any headway in the case. Last week, miltants detonated a bomb outside Baba Saheb Shrine in Charsadda in restive Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, damaging a portion of the structure. The Taliban has stepped up attacks at Sufi shrines in recent years, especially in northwest Pakistan, where militant groups have a strong presence.
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