LAHORE, Dec 10,2013 (Ihsan Qadir / UPI Next) — The Muslim holy month of Muharram, which roughly coincided with November, brought fear to Pakistan after sectarian violence claimed at least 11 lives and left 70 people injured across the country, the Punjab chief minister’s office said.
Clashes between Sunni and Shiite Muslims erupted Nov. 15 in Rawalpindi, the seat of Pakistan’s military, in Punjab province. They later spread to other parts of the country, including the cities of Multan, Chishtian, Kohat and Hangu.
Rioters burned shops, brandished arms, made hate speeches, hurled threats and distributed pamphlets containing hate material.
Local media reported the fighting began at a Rawalpindi seminary after a Sunni prayer leader made an inflammatory speech against Shiites in his Friday sermon Nov. 15. Each side blames the other for the breakout of violence.