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Sunni Tehrik (ST)
Sunni Tehreek (ST)
Pakistan Sunni Tehreek (PST)

Sunni Tehrik (ST = Sunni Movement) is a Sunni Barelvi militant organization, established in 1982 by Ilyas Qadri [other sources report the organization was formed in 1990]. The party seeks to prevent what the ST describes as the capturing of the mosques and madrassas of the Barelvi school of thought by Deobandi and Ahl-e-Hadith groups. The concept of re-taking the mosques and madrassas defined their main motto, which was Jawaniyan lutaaingai, masjidain bachayeingai [We will sacrifice our lives to protect our mosques]. It is part of the Sunni Ittehad Council, an alliance of Barelvi political parties.

The Sunni Tehrik Party is a mid-sized Sunni Muslim extremist organization with a reputation for carrying out bombings, shootings, and other acts of violence. This group is believed to be a retaliatory militant wing against sectarian attacks by the ASWJ. ST is accused of engaging in turf wars to gain control of the mosques of rival sects through land acquisition. The political arm of the sectarian extremist group Sunni Tehrik accepted only Brailvi members.

On 18 May 2001, a vehicle carrying Saleem Qadri, the leader of the Sunni Tehrik Party, and seven others, was attacked by six men with automatic weapons. Qadri and the others had been on their way to Friday prayers in Karachi. Local commentators speculated that rival Sunni extremist groups, including the Jaish-e-Mohammad and the SSP, may have ordered Qadri's killing.

On 12 January 2002 President Musharraf announced a ban on five extremist groups and put another on the watch list, with a view to cleansing the society of terrorism, sectarian violence and intolerance. The groups banned were Jaish-i-Mohammad, LashkariI-Taiba, Sipah-i-Sahaba Pakistan, Tehrik-i-Jaferia and Tanzim Nifaz-i-Shariat-i-Mohammadi. Sunni Tehrik was put on the watch list.

Intrasectarian Sunni violence also appeared to decrease in most of the country during 2005. Deobandis reported that Sunni Tehrik had largely abandoned its assassination of Deobandi clergy and supporters in Sindh. Deobandi leaders reported one known assassination on October 9, 2004, when unknown gunmen in Karachi killed Mufti Jameel Ahmed Khan and an associate in their vehicle. The assassination might have been linked to a Deobandi-versus-Shi'a cycle of violence playing out at the same time in Punjab.

In 2009, the groups leader, Muhammad Sarwat Ejaz Qadri, also formed the Pakistan Inquilab Tehreek as a political wing of the organization. In 2012, the party was converted into a political party with the name of Pakistan Sunni Tehreek (PST).

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Page last modified: 09-07-2018 12:55:18 ZULU