Governor Salman Taseer, member of the ruling Pakistani Peoples Party and governor of the Punjab Province, was assassinated today by one of his guards in the capital city of Islamabad. Taseer’s death adds yet more uncertainty at a time when the Pakistani political situation is in turmoil.
The assassin, Malik Mumtaz Hussain Qadri, was a personal bodyguard and a member of Punjab’s Elite Forces. He confessed to the assassination and said he was prompted by Taseer’s condemnation of Pakistan’s controversial blasphemy law as a “black law.”
Shops across the Punjabi capital city of Lahore were closed for much of the day in the wake of the killing, as members of the Pakistani Peoples Party protested and blocked traffic. The assassination drew strong rebukes from members of a number of opposition factions and long-time rivals.
Not from everyone, however, as Asadullah Bhutto, a top member of Jamaat-e Islami, responded to the announcement of Taseer’s killing during an ongoing press conference with barely restrained jubilation, announcing that “whoever has killed him is a pious man and will go directly to heaven.” Bhutto added that the PPP was to blame for Taseer’s death for not having replaced him sooner.
Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz
- Pompeo Rejects EU Appeal for Iran Sanctions Exemptions - July 16th, 2018
- US Commander: Afghan ISIS Resilient to US Attacks, Almost Impossible to Defeat - July 16th, 2018
- Israel Attacks on Aleppo Air Base Killed at Least 22 - July 16th, 2018
- White House Orders Diplomats to Seek Direct Talks With Afghan Taliban - July 16th, 2018
- US Airstrikes Kill at Least Eight Civilians in Eastern Syria - July 16th, 2018