Two Killed In Failed Attack on Chinese Consulate In Karachi
Separatist militants armed with guns and a suicide vest tried to storm the Chinese consulate in the southern Pakistani port city of Karachi on Friday
Separatist militants armed with guns and a suicide vest tried to storm the Chinese consulate in the southern Pakistani port city of Karachi on Friday, in one of the most serious attacks in years against Chinese nationals in the Islamic state.
No Chinese nationals or consulate staff were harmed. At least seven people were killed as police clashed with the militants: three militants, two policemen and a father and son, Pakistani nationals, who were apparently at the consulate to pick up visas,
But none of the 21 Chinese nationals inside the large compound in Karachi were hurt, according to the Pakistan's Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi.
He told local reporters that Chinese diplomats and staff members were taken to a secure location following the attack. The attack on the consulate comes at a delicate time for relations between Pakistan and China.
Islamabad is hoping to secure billions of dollars in loans from Beijing to shore up its precarious economy. In an apparently unrelated attack that occurred hours after the assault on the consulate, a bomb blast targeted a Shiite community in Pakistan's remote northwest province, killing at least 31 people.
At a daily news briefing in Beijing, China's foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang strongly condemned the attack on the consulate but said the militants did not enter the compound.
Video from the scene showed smoke billowing from the area as the sound of explosions echoed through the upscale neighborhood.
The attack ended shortly after it began on Friday morning, and later video showed paramilitary forces and police rushing to cordon off the area.
Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan suggested the attack was "part of conspiracy against Pak and China economic and strategic cooperation," according to a statement issued by Khan's office.
"The prime minister has ordered a complete inquiry into the incident and has desired that elements behind this incident must be unearthed," the statement said.