Beliefnet
(RNS) A Shiite Muslim gunman opened fire on a funeral processionMonday (Dec. 27) in Pakistan, leaving 12 members of a rival Sunni Muslimgroup dead and injuring six others.

The dead all belonged to the militant Sunni Muslim groupSipah-e-Sahaba, or Guardians of the Friends of the Prophet. They wereattacked in a graveyard in Sikunder Pur, in northwest Pakistan, when theshooting occurred. They were there to bury a Sipah-e-Sahaba leader.

The gunman was identified by police as Salamat Shah, a ShiiteMuslim, the Associated Press reported. Police reportedly said Shahattacked the funeral party because he did not want to remove a smallbuilding that local residents thought might become a Shiite Muslimmosque.

The Sunni-dominated local administration had ordered Shah to removehis building.

"We warned the administration that we feared he would try to attackus but they didn't do anything," said Hafiz-ur-Rehman, a local Sunnileader.

He said his organization, which has been blamed for the deaths ofhundreds of Shiite Muslims in Pakistan, would hold a meeting todetermine its response to the killing.

Most of Pakistan's 140 million people are Sunni Muslims. In recentyears militant groups belonging to both sects have sprung up in Pakistanand often clash.

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