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Gunmen kill two Shiites in Pakistan's Quetta

Gunmen in southwest Pakistan shot dead two Shiite Muslims who had emigrated from neighbouring Afghanistan almost a decade ago to escape violence there, police said Sunday. Two men opened fire Saturday night on the family, from Afghanistan's Hazara community, who were at a bus station in Quetta preparing to travel to the southern city of Karachi. "A man of about 65 years of age and his 18-year-old grandson were killed in the firing at the bus terminal at Sariyab road," Imran Qureshi, a senior police official, told AFP.

Statistics equal power as Afghanistan counts its people

Afghanistan goes to the polls in less than three weeks' time, but the new president will have only sketchy information about the people he governs -- something that census official Murtaza Rezai hopes to help rectify. Rezai goes door-to-door in the capital Kabul, collecting answers to a survey that is the first attempt to calculate the size and makeup of Afghanistan's population since 1979.

Pakistan Shiites agree to bury their dead, end protest

Members of a largely Shiite ethnic community in Pakistan have agreed to bury the bodies of their relatives, pilgrims who were killed in a bomb attack earlier this week. Grief-stricken Hazara mourners had refused to inter their dead after a roadside blast on Tuesday hit a bus around 60 kilometres (40 miles) west of Quetta, the capital of southwestern Baluchistan province, killing 24 Shiite pilgrims.

Hazara Shiites flee Pakistan to Australia in growing numbers: report

A growing number of predominantly Shiite ethnic Hazaras have been fleeing persecution by radical Sunni Muslims in Pakistan's Balochistan and seeking asylum in Australia, according to a U.N. report on recent trends in migrant smuggling from Pakistan released Thursday. The report by the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime was released at a time when Hazara Shiites in Balochistan are under growing attacks from extremist Sunni outfits in the southwestern province.

Hazara Shiites flee Pakistan to Australia in growing numbers: report

A growing number of predominantly Shiite ethnic Hazaras have been fleeing persecution by radical Sunni Muslims in Pakistan's Balochistan and seeking asylum in Australia, according to a U.N. report on recent trends in migrant smuggling from Pakistan released Thursday. The report by the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime was released at a time when Hazara Shiites in Balochistan are under growing attacks from extremist Sunni outfits in the southwestern province.

2 Kidnapped foreign aid workers freed in Afghanistan

Kabul, Aug 23 (EFE).- Two international aid workers - a Canadian and a Bangladeshi - who were kidnapped in Afghanistan three days ago have been liberated by security forces, the AIP news agency said Friday. The workers were freed on Thursday afternoon, the governor of Bamiyan province, Habiba Surabi, told AIP. Four suspected kidnappers have been detained, Surabi said. The kidnapping took place on Tuesday near Bamiyan city, the provincial capital.

Aid workers kidnapped in Afghanistan

Kabul, Aug 21 (EFE).- Two foreign humanitarian workers, one of them a Canadian, were kidnapped in central Afghanistan by a group of armed men, a police official told Efe on Wednesday. The abduction took place on Tuesday afternoon in the city of Bamiyan, capital of the same-named province, and authorities do not know the nationality of the second victim, a local police officer who wanted to remain anonymous said. No group has claimed responsibility for the abduction.

Corruption fighter, Afghan woman, rights group finalists for UBC integrity prize

VANCOUVER - An international human rights group, an Indian corruption fighter and a campaigner for Afghan women's rights are the finalists for a $100,000 human-rights prize to be handed out by the University of British Columbia's law school. It is the inaugural Allard Prize for International Integrity, which will be one of the largest awards in the world given out for efforts to combat corruption and promote human rights. Among the three finalists announced Monday is the group Global Witness.

Afghanistan's only Olympian bows out over accusations

Afghanistan's only Olympic medallist, taekwondo star and national hero Rohullah Nikpa, announced Tuesday that he would boycott international competition unless reforms root out discrimination and mismanagement within the sport in his country. The 26-year-old said he would not compete in this week's WTF World Taekwondo Championships in Puebla, Mexico, to protest against poor management and discrimination within Afghanistan's Taekwondo Federation (ATF).

Afghanistan's only Olympian bows out over accusations

Afghanistan's only Olympic medallist, taekwondo star and national hero Rohullah Nikpa, announced Tuesday that he would boycott international competition unless reforms root out discrimination and mismanagement within the sport in his country. The 26-year-old said he would not compete in this week's WTF World Taekwondo Championships in Puebla, Mexico, to protest against poor management and discrimination within Afghanistan's Taekwondo Federation (ATF).
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