Police seek more arrests in Pakistan park killing

Pakistani police on Saturday said they were seeking to arrest another four paramilitary personnel over the killing of an unarmed man in a public park that shocked the nation.

Two soldiers from the Rangers paramilitary force, Shahid Zafar and Mohammed Afzal, were on Friday remanded into police custody for five days over the killing which was captured on camera and broadcast repeatedly on television.

"We have sent a request to Rangers officials to hand over four of the remaining soldiers seen in the video," said a senior police investigator on condition of anonymity.

Security forces shot dead Sarfaraz Shah, 22, in Karachi on Wednesday, accusing him of robbery, but his family has demanded justice, insisting he was an innocent student passing the time of day.

Widely viewed footage showed a clean-shaven man wearing black trousers and a navy shirt crying and pleading for his life as a soldier cocks his rifle at his neck, then shoots him twice in the hand and thigh in a local park.

As his blood pours onto the ground, the man begs for help from soldiers -- who appear to do nothing but watch -- until he falls unconscious.

Police said they had also taken custody of Afsar Khan, a man in plainclothes who dragged the victim over to the paramilitary soldiers and later filed a criminal case, accusing Shah of robbery.

Another local police official said taking custody of the four soldiers was essential to an investigation ordered by the government and the Supreme Court.

A Rangers spokesman said he was unaware that police were seeking custody of the other four soldiers who were at the scene.

"I don't know about it, but we'll hand them over if such a reqest comes our way," spokesman Bilal Farooq said.

Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry on Friday directed the government to remove from their posts Major General Aijaz Chaudhry, head of the paramilitary in Sindh province, and Sindh police chief Fayyaz Leghari.

The victim's brother Salik Shah, a local TV reporter, said the family wanted to see everyone involved face justice.

The incident mirrored the killings last month in the southwestern Baluchistan province of five unarmed Chechens, one of them a pregnant woman,  that are also under investigation.

Members of local print and electronic media and civil society held a demonstration in front of Karachi press club on Saturday and hanged an effigy in Rangers uniform, an AFP reporter at the scene said.

"We want justice. Hang the killers. We want security and not bullets," they shouted.

"The incidents like the one we witnessed three days ago in Karachi creates a sense of insecurity among the people," leading jurist and former supreme court judge Fakhruddin Ebrahim said in his brief address to the 80 or so protestors.

He said state institutions should refrain from indulging in acts of violence.

"Pakistan is passing through very difficult times and the situation will worsen to a great extent if the government fails to provide security and safety to the people," he said.

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