45 Die in Pakistan Shooting Spree
Gunman go on rampage after assassination of Karachi lawmaker
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 3, 2010 6:30 AM CDT
Pakistani para military troops patrol in Karachi, Pakistan following the killing of a local leader of the Muttahida Quami Movement in Pakistan on Tuesday, Aug. 3, 2010.   (Shakil Adil)
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(Newser) – Gunmen killed at least 45 people in Pakistan's largest city after the assassination of a prominent lawmaker set off a wave of revenge attacks. Dozens of vehicles and shops were set ablaze as security forces struggled to regain control of Karachi. Many of the dead were killed in targeted, execution-style attacks, authorities said. Schools were closed and most business ground to a halt today in the southern city of more than 16 million.

The latest unrest came after Raza Haider, a provincial lawmaker, was shot dead along with his bodyguard in a mosque while preparing to offer prayers yesterday in Nazimabad area. Haider was a member of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement, the political party that runs the city and represents mainly descendants of Urdu-speaking migrants from India who settled in Pakistan when it was created in 1947. The MQM's main rival is the Awami National Party, a secular nationalist party whose main power center is Pakistan's northwest and whose base is the ethnic Pashtun community living in Karachi.