ISLAMABAD A popular member of Pakistan’s minority Ahmadi group and relative of its 1st Nobel Prize winner was gunned down on Thursday in an attack claimed by banned militant team Lashkar-e-Jhangvi.
Malik Saleem Latif, a cousin of Abdus Salam, who shared the physics prize in 1979, was shot just yards from his household in the town of Nankana, in the vicinity of Lahore in the southern province of Punjab, reported Saleemuddin, a spokesman for the Ahmadi group.
Latif was riding his motor-bike to function with his son when a gunman opened fireplace, reported Saleemuddin, who goes by only one particular identify.
“Threats towards Ahmadis are frequent in the region and Latif was a popular member of the group and a properly-recognised attorney,” he extra.
The Ahmadi group has been a concentrate on of mob violence and attacks since the government legislated the sect as non-Muslim in 1974.
“Saleem Latif was spreading Ahmadi beliefs in the region,” the militant team, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, reported in a statement boasting Thursday’s attack.
It was the most up-to-date in a sequence of sectarian incidents in Pakistan, exactly where security forces have battled teams like Lashkar-e-Jhangvi for many years.
“We have three teams investigating and looking for the assailants and seeking to apprehend them,” district police officer Shahzada Billa Umer instructed Reuters.
Ahmadis are not allowed to get in touch with themselves Muslim or use Islamic symbols in their spiritual tactics, a crime punishable below Pakistan’s blasphemy rules.
The rules also make propagation of Ahmadi beliefs an offence, with 494 Ahmadis accused in 1,335 these types of situations over the past thirty many years, legal rights entire body Amnesty International has reported in a report.
Salam, who was Pakistan’s only Nobel laureate until Malala Yousufzai shared the peace prize in 2014, remains a contentious determine mainly because of his spiritual history.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s government a short while ago named a university physics division after Salam, drawing condemnation from the spiritual suitable, including the point out funded Council of Islamic Ideology.
In 2010, two simultaneous attacks on Ahmadi mosques in Lahore by the Pakistani Taliban killed 94 individuals. Three days later, militants stormed the healthcare facility exactly where survivors have been taken, killing twelve individuals, mainly police and healthcare facility staff members.
Salam, who died in 1996, shared the Nobel Prize with Sheldon Glashow and Steven Weinberg for encouraging to pave the way to the discovery of the “God particle,” one particular of science’s best achievements in the very last 100 many years.
(Supplemental reporting by Saud Mehsud Enhancing by Clarence Fernandez)