Gunmen kill activist in Pakistan

Gunmen kill activist in Pakistan

Gunmen on a motorcycle killed a prominent women’s rights activist in Pakistan just hours after she held a forum on the country’s restive Baluchistan region, home to a long-running insurgency, police said Saturday.
While investigators declined to speculate on a motive for the killing of Sabeen Mehmud, friends and colleagues immediately described her death as a targeted assassination in Pakistan, a country with a nascent democracy where the military and intelligence services still hold tremendous sway.
The gunmen shot both Mehmud and her mother, Mehnaz Mehmud, as they stopped at a traffic light Friday night in an upscale Karachi neighborhood, senior police officer Zafar Iqbal said. Later, journalists saw their car at a nearby police station, the front driver’s side window smashed out and a pair of sandals on the floorboard, broken glass all around them. Blood stained the car’s white body.
“Two men riding a motorcycle opened fire on the car,” Iqbal said. Mehmud “died on her way to the hospital. Her mother was also wounded.”
Alia Chughtai, a close friend of Mehmud, told The Associated Press that Mehmud was driving at the time of attack and her mother was sitting next to her. Chughtai said Mehmud’s driver, who escaped unharmed, was sitting in the back seat at the time of the attack. She said she did not know why the driver wasn’t driving the car.
AP