2 Chinese killed in attack in N Pakistan
Updated: 2013-06-23 16:41
ISLAMABAD - Two Chinese nationals and one Chinese American were among the 11 people killed in a pre-dawn terrorist attack in Pakistan's northern area of Gilgit-Baltistan on Sunday, the Chinese Embassy in Pakistan told Xinhua.
Details about the killed Chinese and Chinese American are yet to be confirmed, according to the Chinese embassy.
Another Chinese national has been rescued in the attack, the embassy said.
According to Pakistani Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, 11 people were killed in early Sunday morning's attack. They include five Ukrainians, one Russian and two Pakistanis.
The killed Pakistanis were tourist guides, said the minister.
The minister did not mention the sex, age and other details about the killed foreigners.
He also confirmed that one Chinese national has been rescued in the attack.
The Chinese, who escaped the attack, hid himself in a water drainage and was later recovered by the rescue team, he added.
The minister announced the suspension of the chief secretary and police chief of Gilgit-Baltistan shortly after the deadly attack was reported.
According to police and local media reports, the incident took place at about 12:30 a.m. (local time) Sunday when unidentified gunmen, reportedly dressed in police uniforms, opened fired at tourists living in a hotel at the foot of Nanga Parbat, the ninth highest mountain in the world.
There were an estimated 10 to 12 militants involved in the attack, reported local media.
They woke up the tourists in sleep and ordered them to come out of the hotel and opened fired at them, said the report.
Most of the killed were tourists coming here to climb the mountain, police said, adding that the hotel is located at a base camp of Nanga Parbat in Fairy Meadows of the Diamir area of Gilgit.
A police officer in Gilgit, who declined to disclose his name and title, told Xinhua in a telephone interview that people first reported the attack to a police station located some 38 km away from the attack site and then police at that station reported it to higher officials in Gilgit.
He said that the attack site is far away from Gilgit, capital town of Gilgit-Baltistan, and it would take two days to reach there by road. He added they were thinking of asking the army to airlift the bodies out of that area, first to Chilas town in Gilgit for postmortem, then to the country's capital of Islamabad.
A search operation has been kicked off in the attack area to hunt down the attackers, said the police officer.
Both Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif have condemned the attack. Nawaz Sharif said that the government will take all the measures to ensure foreign tourists' security in the country.
Latest news coming in said that Jundullah, a fraction of Pakistani Taliban, has claimed the responsibility for the attack.