On Friday morning, armed attackers raided a Chinese consulate in the southern Pakistani city Karachi. The gunmen first killed two policemen before entering the consulate, security officials have said.
All three gunmen were killed by police and the building was secured just after the attack. Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has stated at a press conference: “All of our Chinese friends and officials who work at the consulate, 21 in total, all of them are safe and they have been shifted to a secure location. The area is now clear”.
Foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang has commented: “China strongly condemns any violent attacks against diplomatic agencies and requests that Pakistan takes practical measures to ensure the safety of Chinese citizens and institutions in the country”.
The Baloch Liberation Army (BLA) has been said to have claimed the attack. It is an armed separatist group that has been in battle with the Pakistani state since over a decade in the fight for Balochistan’s independence.
During a satellite phone call from an unknown location, BLA spokesperson Jihand Baloch has told Al Jazeera: “The BLA claims responsibility for this attack. Three of our fighters have raided the consulate”.
Neighbour of the Chinese consulate Liaquat Jandga, who was present during the firing and explosion, has said: “It felt like a war zone”.
During this horrifying incident, a suicide attacker bombed a crowded festival and market in north-west Pakistan, killing at least 25 people.
Moreover, in eastern Afghanistan, a suicide bomber set off explosives at a mosque on an army base, leaving 26 people dead and 20 wounded. And earlier this week, another suicide bomber murdered 55 people in the capital of Afghanistan, Kabul.