Politician killed

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The Independent Online
KARACHI, Pakistan, Reuter - Gunmen burst into the home of a leader of a powerful ethnic-based party in southern Pakistan on Saturday, dragged him from his bed and shot him dead in front of his wife, police said.

Azim Tariq, 41, chief of a faction of the popular Mohajir National Movement (MQM), was asleep at his Karachi home when two men broke into his bedroom, pulled him into the sitting room and opened fire with Kalashnikov assault rifles.

The MQM leader was taken to hospital where doctors pronounced him dead. One doctor said Tariq had been hit by six bullets in the head and chest and killed instantly.

His wife was in hospital with a broken arm after one of the gunmen hit her with the butt of a gun when she screamed and begged the gunmen not to shoot her husband.

'No one has claimed responsibility,' a police officer said.

A senior official of Tariq's faction accused an unnamed rival group of sending death threats to Tariq recently.

Tariq, facing charges linked to the murder of a political opponent last year, was on bail after giving himself up to a special anti-terrorist court in Karachi in March.