At least five Shia Muslims have been killed in Pakistan and several more injured as terrorists opened fire on a religious gathering held in memory of Imam Hussein (Peace be upon him).
Local police said the attack was carried out by armed men on motorcycles in Karachi’s North Nazimabad neighborhood on Saturday.
At least six people were wounded in the attack, two of whom are in a serious condition. Most of the attendants at the ceremony were women.
A notorious terrorist group known as Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) has claimed responsibility for the attack, Reuters reported.
"Lashkar-e-Jhangvi Al Alami accepts responsibility for those killed in this attack, and we announce that there is no room for the enemies of the companions of the Prophet Muhammad in Pakistan," said the group's spokesperson, Ali bin Sufyan.
The anti-Shia terrorist group also claimed responsibility for a last week attack on a police training academy in the restive Balochistan province that left over 60 people dead. Other groups, including Daesh, also claimed responsibility for the incident.
The Lashkar-e-Jhangvi terrorist group, which has been involved in several attacks on Shia Muslims in recent years, is largely funded by Saudi Arabia. It has claimed responsibility for some of the most brazen attacks on the Shia community in Pakistan's recent history, including a January 2013 bombing in Quetta, where over 100 members of the Hazara community were killed.
Shias in Pakistan have been the subject of numerous attacks, with the Pakistani faction of the Taliban carrying out most of such assaults in the past. The community accounts for some 20 percent of Pakistan's 200-million population and is mostly based in Balochistan, an area which borders Iran and Afghanistan and has oil and gas resources. However, security has been a main issue for the Shias as thousands of them have been killed as a result of militancy and hate attacks over the past decade.