Sunni-Shi’ite Jihad Update. “Sectarian clashes in Pakistan kill 70: officials,” from Agence France-Presse:
PESHAWAR – Fighting between rival Sunni and Shia Muslims in northwestern Pakistan’s troubled tribal belt has claimed 70 lives, security officials and state media reported Sunday.
State television said another 150 people were injured as heavily armed tribesmen clashed in the Kurram district bordering Afghanistan.
Security officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, said at least 61 civilians had died in fighting in the district’s main town Parachinar, where sectarian clashes in April left 55 dead.
The military said nine soldiers from the army and paramilitary forces had also died, with 15 wounded, after being caught in the crossfire.
Witnesses reported continued fighting overnight despite a curfew in place since
Fighters from the Shia-dominated Turi tribe and the mainly Sunni Muslim Mengal
clan were perched on rooftops and hills overlooking Parachinar, armed with rockets and a mix of heavy and light weapons, witnesses said.
“Both are well entrenched and they are firing on each other,” one resident said.
“I can’t give you the exact casualty figure as fighting is still going on. Last night we had 45 dead and up to 90 wounded,” local administration chief Fakhre Alam told AFP.