Terror hits Balochistan, Gilgit again
GILGIT/QUETTA: Gilgit and Balochistan again came under terrorist attacks on Saturday in which 3 policemen were martyred, while eight others, including three Chinese engineers, were injured.
Three police personnel were martyred and two others were injured after terrorists attacked a check post in Kargah area of Gilgit early Saturday morning. According to police, eight to 10 terrorists attacked the check post in Manjiye area of Kargah, located at a distance of 45 kilometres from Gilgit. Police said two terrorists were also killed in retaliatory fire. The injured personnel were taken to District Headquarters Hospital Gilgit, while police cordoned off the area and launched a search operation.
According to SSP Tanveer Ahmed, one of the attackers has been identified as Khalil. The attacker was wanted in several cases. A number of terrorism incidents have been reported from Gilgit Baltistan region lately. Earlier in August, at least 12 girls schools were attacked in Chilas, which is situated at a distance of 130 kilometres from Gilgit. Unidentified people attacked the schools and damaged the property. It was also said the attackers torched some items in the schools and set off bombs in two of them. Following the attack, search operations were carried out in the region during which at least 16 suspects were arrested, according to the GB government.
Meanwhile, six people were injured in a suicide blast near a bus carrying employees of Saindak Copper-Gold Project in Dalbandin, Chaghi. A suicide bomber attempted to attack the bus but did not succeed, a Levies source was quoted as saying by Geo News. The Commissioner Quetta Division Muhammad Hashim Ghilzai confirmed that a suicide bomber detonated explosives near the bus. “Three foreigners and three FC personnel were injured in the blast,” the commissioner said. The injured were shifted to a nearby hospital.
“The attacker, waiting in a small truck along the route (detonated) the vehicle when the bus carrying Chinese engineers came close to him,” said Dostain Dashti, a senior police officer in the region. Saifullah Khaitran, a senior local administration official, confirmed the attack, adding that all the injured were in stable condition. Muhammad Ibrahim, the driver of the targeted bus, told AFP from his hospital bed that he had averted major loss by slamming the brakes before the bus hit the attacker´s vehicle. “The whole bus would have burnt if I had not applied the brakes,” he said. Baloch insurgents later claimed responsibility for the attack. “We targeted this bus which was carrying Chinese engineers,” Jihand Baloch, a spokesperson for Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA), told AFP by phone. “We attacked them because they are extracting gold from our region, we won’t allow it,” he said. Saindak Copper-Gold Mine is located near Saindak town in Chaghi district of Balochistan. The discovery of copper deposits at Saindak was made in the 1970s in collaboration with a Chinese engineering firm.
The Caretaker chief minister of Balochistan Allauddin Marri condemned the bus attack. He sought a report of the incident from the district administration and ordered effective measures for security of Chinese engineers. Pakistan and China strongly condemned the attack on Chinese engineers in Dalbandin. The Foreign Office spokesman Dr Muhammad Faisal on his official Twitter account said all of the injured were stable and being treated. “Pakistan remains unflinchingly undeterred in the face of such dastardly terrorist acts,” he tweeted.
Meanwhile, in a statement, the Chinese government said it had always attached great importance to the security of the Chinese companies and citizens in Pakistan. “The embassy and consulates general of China in Pakistan strongly condemn the violent attack in Balochistan today, and express our sincere sympathy to the injured from both countries,” Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in the statement. It said the Embassy of China in Pakistan and Consulate General in Karachi had activated the emergency response mechanism immediately after the attack, and maintained close communication with the Pakistani side. “The Chinese side has requested the relevant Pakistani departments to investigate the incident, bring the perpetrators to justice and take further effective measures to ensure the security of the Chinese institutions and citizens in Pakistan,” the statement added. The News