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Pakistan targets militants; Shiites end protest

By The Associated Press

This article was published February 19, 2013 at 8:26 a.m.

— Shiite Muslim leaders in southwestern Pakistan say they are ending three days of protests after the government launched an operation against militants responsible for a bombing targeting the minority sect that killed 89 people.

A prominent Shiite leader, Amin Shaheedi, announced the end of the protest in Quetta, the capital of Baluchistan province, on Tuesday after talks with a government delegation sent from Islamabad.

Shaheedi said arrangements would be made to bury the victims from Saturday’s bombing. Relatives had refused to bury their loved ones until the army took control of Quetta and launched a targeted operation against the militants behind the bombing.

Baluchistan’s home secretary, Akbar Hussain Durrani, said paramilitary forces began an operation Monday night. He said four members of the group responsible for Saturday’s bombing, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, were killed in a shootout, including a senior commander.

There is no sign the army will take control of the city.

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