Sunday, September 19, 2021

China downplays gun attack on Chinese national in Karachi, terms it as an “isolated case”

China on Wednesday termed the shooting incident in Pakistan’s Karachi city, in which a Chinese national was injured, as an isolated case, days after the all-weather allies termed the bus explosion killing nine Chinese in the restive Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province as a “terror attack”. Responding to a question on this, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Zhao Lijian told a media briefing that China is following this matter closely, and the relevant case is under investigation. He downplayed the incident and termed it as an isolated case.

We are fully confident that the Pakistani side will protect the safety of Chinese citizens and property in Pakistan, he said. According to reports, gunmen riding a motorcycle on Wednesday fired shots at a car carrying two Chinese factory workers in Karachi, injuring one.

The shooting incident comes days after an explosion on a bus carrying Chinese engineers in Dasu area of Upper Kohistan district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province killed nine Chinese and injured 27 others. The bus fell into a deep ravine after the explosion. China rushed a special investigative team amid confusing signals from Pakistan that it could be a gas blast. Pakistan on July 24 retracted from its earlier stand that the blast was caused due to technical problems.

The two sides in a joint press release issued at the conclusion of the third session of the Pakistan-China Foreign Ministers’ Strategic Dialogue held in Chengdu agreed that the incident was a “terrorist attack”. The Dasu bus blast had accentuated Beijing’s concerns as thousands of Chinese personnel worked in installations and projects being built under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, (CPEC) massively funded by China.

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