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Senior Pakistani politician stabbed to death in London

It is not yet clear whether the fatal stabbing of Imran Farooq, a member of Pakistan's ruling MQM pa

Yesterday Imran Farooq, a founding member of Pakistan's Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) party, was fatally stabbed in London.

Many in government have blamed the Taliban and a banned Sunni Muslim militant group Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan for the killing, despite the current lack of evidence that it was politically motivated. However, Farooq Sattar, a senior government minister, would not speculate on the identity of the culprits, stating he was confident British police would make a suitable arrest and set down "exemplary punishment" to the perpetrator.

Pakistan's largest city, Karachi, closed after MQM declared 10 days of mourning. Shops, schools and public transport were shut down. Fears of violence in the city are rising: according to police, several vehicles have already been torched. Up to 100 people were killed and hundreds wounded in Karachi last month Raza Haider, another prominent MQM member was gunned down while attending a funeral.

Farooq had not been an active figure in Pakistan, having fled his native country to claim asylum in Britain 11 years ago as a result of criminal charges by the Pakistani police, whcih he denied.

MQM are part of the ruling coalition government headed by Asif Ali Zadari, the much-criticised President.