'Attack on China-Pakistan Friendship', Says Islamabad as Female Bomber Targets Confucius Institute
© Photo : Hindustan Times/screenshotThe blast occurred near Confucius Institute inside Karachi University
© Photo : Hindustan Times/screenshot
China had asked for "high-level" security guarantees for its citizens currently residing in Pakistan for various purposes, including the infrastructure development project CPEC. Last July, 13 Chinese nationals, primarily engineers, were killed in a suicide bombing in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
At least four people, including three Chinese nationals working at the Confucius Institute, were killed in Karachi as a female suicide bomber blew herself up, targeting a van near Karachi University in Pakistan.
Pakistan's Foreign Ministry has described it as "a direct attack on the Pakistan-China friendship and ongoing co-operation".
"Pakistan and China are close friends and iron-brothers. Pakistan attaches great importance to safety and security of Chinese nationals, projects and institutions in Pakistan", the ministry said on Tuesday.
The victims were identified as Confucius Institute Director Huang Guiping, two other Chinese staffers Ding Mupeng, Chen Sai, as well as Pakistani national Khalid, the driver. The one injured is also a Chinese national and has been identified as Wang Yuqing.
Pakistan's Foreign Ministry vowed to apprehend the culprits and bring them to justice.
"I strongly condemn this cowardly act of terrorism. The perpetrators will surely be brought to justice", Shehbaz Sharif, Pakistan's prime minister, said.
The Majeed Brigade of the banned Baloch Liberation Army has claimed responsibility, saying the blast was carried out by a female suicide bomber named Shari Baloch.
This is only the second incident in Pakistan's history where a female suicide bomber has carried out an attack; the first was in 1995.
This is yet another major attack on Chinese nationals in Pakistan. In July last year, 10 Chinese engineers engaged in a China-funded infrastructure project were killed in a suicide attack.
Hundreds of Chinese nationals are engaged in projects linked to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. Over the past eight years, $25.4 billion in direct investment has come under CPEC in Pakistan.