Pakistan’s Interior Minister Shot In Attempted Assassination

Ahsan Iqbal REUTERS/Faisal Mahmood

Terry Haynes Contributor
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Ahsan Iqbal, interior minister of Pakistan, has been shot in what appears to be an attempted assassination.

Police have identified the culprit as 21-year-old Abid Hussain, of Neelum village in Narowal, Punjab province.

Iqbal was shot in his right arm at close range with a 30-bore pistol, according to French press agency AFP. The official, who will survive, was in Narowal for a public assembly.

District police officer Irman Kishwar told CNN, “As he got out of a car, a young man shot him. The assailant has been apprehended.”

No motive for the crime has been announced, but Iqbal has been a vocal supporter of religious minorities in Pakistan. In recent weeks, he has met with such groups, who are considered heretical by the nation’s radicalized Sunni Muslim offshoots.

Iqbal is a member of the country’s ruling party, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz.

Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif vowed via Twitter, “Those who indulged in this heinous act will be brought to justice.”

As reported by Reuters, the gunman may belong to a new extremist Muslim party in Pakistan.