KABUL, 26 February 2013 – United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is deeply concerned by the ongoing sectarian violence in Pakistan. On 17 February, in his second statement on the issue this year, the Secretary-General strongly condemned the terrorist attack carried out on 16 February in Quetta that targeted the Shi’a Hazara community resulting in more than 80 persons killed and nearly 200 wounded, many of them women and children.
He called for swift and determined action against those claiming responsibility and perpetrating such actions. The Secretary-General reiterated the strong support of the United Nations for efforts by the Government and people of Pakistan to protect religious and ethnic minorities and to combat the scourge of terrorism, as well as his hope that the perpetrators of these violent acts would be brought to justice.
Following the January 2013 spate of attacks, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Afghanistan, Ján Kubiš, also stated that indiscriminate acts of violence and terrorism against civilians were totally unacceptable irrespective of where they occur. “These heinous acts cannot be justified by any cause,” he said.
UNAMA is reiterating these messages and expressions of grave concern in response to the appeals and petitions delivered to its Kabul, Bamyan, Herat and Mazar-i-Sharif Offices by representatives of the civil society of Afghanistan.