A Pakistani teenager shot and killed a man from the minority Ahmadiyya community, police said on Friday, the latest in a series of hate crimes against the persecuted group.
The 65-year-old man was gunned down outside a clinic in the north-western city of Peshawar on Thursday, police officer Zafar Khan told dpa.
The police arrested the 18-year-old male, who had confessed to the crime and cited the man’s faith as his sole motive, Khan said.
This was the fifth Ahmadiyya man who has been fatally targeted over his faith in Peshawar in less than a year, said Saleem Uddin, a spokesman for the community.
A mentally challenged Pakistani-U.S. citizen from the community was shot and killed inside a courtroom during his trial under Pakistan’s controversial blasphemy laws in 2020.
The U.S. State Department at the time urged Pakistan to repeal blasphemy laws to prevent crimes triggered by religious hatred.
The Ahmadiyya community, a four-million-strong minority group in Pakistan, has faced death, intimidation and a sustained hate campaign for decades.
Ahmadiyya insist they are followers of Islam, but Pakistan declared the group non-Muslim in 1974 for regarding their sect’s founder, Ghulam Ahmad, as a prophet.
Orthodox Islam holds there can be no prophets after Mohammed.
More than 260 members of the group have been killed in targeted gun or bomb attacks since 1984 in Pakistan, according to statistics compiled by the community. (dpa/NAN)