Abdul Rashid Ghazi
|Abdul Rashid Ghazi
During press conference at red mosque 2007
January 29, 1964|
|Died||July 10, 2007
Lal Masjid, Islamabad, Pakistan
Cause of death
|Basti Abdullah, Rojhan, Rajanpur|
|Alma mater||Quaid-i-Azam University|
|Years of service||1998–2007|
Abdul Rashid Ghazi (عبدالرشيد غازی; ca. 1964 – July 10, 2007) was an Islamist Pakistani cleric; son of Muhammad Abdullah Ghazi, and younger brother of Abdul Aziz Ghazi. He was descended from the Sadwani clan of Mazari tribe in the town of Rojhan in Rajanpur, the border district of Punjab province of Pakistan.
Abdul Rashid Ghazi was killed in "intense crossfire" during Operation Silence after Pakistan Army Special Operations Commands's teams stormed the building he and his students had been using.
In his youth Abdul Rashid Ghazi defied his father's wish that he receive formal Islamic education as he wanted to live a modern life. He completed his MSc in International Relations from Quaid-e-Azam University Islamabad in 1987–1988. According to one of his professor, "He was a normal, modern student who was well adjusted to a co-educational system.". After finishing this degree he obtained a job at the Ministry of Education in Islamabad, and also worked with UNESCO.
Under the leadership of Ghazi and his brother the mosque and the madrassa attached to it challenged the polices of the Pakistani government; in particular the military operations against pro-Taleban militants in Pakistan's tribal areas. A fatwa issued by the mosque describing militants killed during the campaign as 'martyrs' led to a rapid deterioration in relations between Pervez Musharraf and Ghazi. The Pakistan government claimed Ghazi was involved in a plot against the president, the army and parliament; however this was later refuted by the government minister for religious affairs.
Students from the mosque started kidnapping people they considered to be 'un-Islamic'. This led to an escalating confrontation with security forces and eventually an armed stand-off. The Pakistan Army decided to take an action against Ghazi, and it was begun as Pakistan Army Special Forces (SF), Pakistan Army Rangers, and Special Service Group (SSG) stormed the mosque. The Pakistan Ministry of Interior reported that Ghazi was killed on 10 July 2007 during Operation Silence. According to the ISPR the body of Ghazi was found in the basement of the Lal Masjid.
- Cameron-Moore, Simon "Pakistan counts costs of bloody end to mosque siege" Reuters, 10, July 2007 retrieved 27 July 2009.
- Tadfeen Islamabad mein ki jaey BBCUrdu, 11 July 2007, retrieved 21 July 2009[dead link]
- "Islamabad Red Mosque Cleric Ghazi Killed" Pakistan Times, 11 July 2007, retrieved 27 July 2009
- Farooqui, Asif "Obituary: Abdul Rashid Ghazi", BBC, July, 2007 , retrieved 27 July 2009.
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