Pakistan arrests 12 suspects in bombing targeting Chinese workers

Islamabad attributes a recent surge in assaults to Afghanistan, detaining over a dozen individuals, including Afghan nationals, in connection to a suicide blast claiming the lives of five Chinese engineers and their driver.

China, being Pakistan's principal regional ally and a vital investor, has frequently fallen victim to militant attacks in the country.

The targeted engineers and their Pakistani driver were en route to the Dasu hydroelectric dam, a project undertaken by a Chinese company in northwest Pakistan, when their vehicle was struck by a suicide bomber.

Authorities, under the cover of anonymity, disclosed that numerous suspects, potentially Afghan nationals, have been apprehended. Islamabad's accusations against Afghanistan for the heightened violence are met with refutation from the Taliban government in Kabul, which denies sheltering militants.

Nonetheless, preliminary evidence hints at the involvement of Pakistan's domestic Taliban faction, the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), which purportedly maintains close ties with its Afghan counterpart.

Despite TTP's denial of responsibility, the attack triggered a diplomatic flurry in Islamabad, driven by the desire to safeguard the substantial investments pledged by Beijing through its Belt and Road initiative. Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, in a gesture of reassurance, visited the Dasu construction site, vowing relentless efforts to ensure the safety of Chinese workers. "We are committed to leaving no stone unturned in guaranteeing their security," he asserted, promising swift action against the perpetrators.

Sharif's proactive stance underscores Pakistan's determination to uphold its commitments to its strategic partner, China, and protect its infrastructure projects from the menace of terrorism. The government's resolve to swiftly apprehend those responsible for the attack signals a firm stance against militancy and underscores the gravity with which it views the security of Chinese personnel and investments within its borders.

Read also: Pakistan: Chinese Firms Halt Dam Projects Due to Security Concerns

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