Shiite leaders call end to protest in Pakistan

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QUETTA, Pakistan — Shiite leaders called for an end to three days of protests by thousands of members of the minority Muslim sect in southwestern Pakistan today, after the government launched a paramilitary operation against militants responsible for a weekend bombing that killed 89 people.

Many of the protesters in Quetta, the capital of Baluchistan, dispersed peacefully. But relatives of the bombing victims who had refused to bury their loved ones in protest said they would continue their demonstration until a key militant leader was arrested. Shiite protesters in other Pakistani cities said they would also continue their protests until the demand was met.

Leaders of the protest had earlier demanded the army take control of Quetta and launch a targeted operation against Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, the group that claimed responsibility for Saturday’s bombing in a produce market.

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