Pakistani rights activist shot dead in Karachi

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Karachi: Gunmen shot dead Pakistani human rights activist, Sabeen Mehmud on Friday after she hosted a talk on the politics of Baluchistan province, where security forces are fighting a separatist insurgency, police and associates said.

Sabeen Mahmud was leaving her Karachi restaurant, where she also holds exhibitions and talks, when the gunman attacked her in her car. Her mother, who was with her, was wounded, police said.

Ms Mehmud was a director of the charity The Second Floor, also known as T2F.

T2F regularly holds seminars on human rights issues. It houses a cafe and book shop where Karachi’s liberal activists and students can meet.

The seminar on torture in Balochistan was held at T2F, having been cancelled by university authorities in Lahore, where it had been due to take place in the last few weeks.

Rights activists accuse the security forces of carrying out extra-judicial killings of separatists in the province. Hundreds of people have disappeared and later been found dead in recent years. The security forces deny any role in the killings.

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