Three policemen were killed by gunmen in the Quetta region, located in Balochistan province, on Sunday, June 11, in an attack on a security checkpoint located along Quetta’s main thoroughfare, Saryab Road. The Al Alami faction of the Sunni militant group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) has claimed responsibility for the shooting.
The Quetta region of Balochistan province, located in north-central Pakistan, has been plagued by violence in recent months and years, due in large part to its placement along a prominent arms smuggling route. Car bombs, suicide bombings, and armed attacks are common and often target local security forces as well as lawyers. In 2016 alone, more than 100 deaths in Quetta were linked to terrorism.
Quetta is part of the Chinese “Silk Road” economic corridor project that connects China’s Xinjiang region to the Arabian Sea. Beijing has invested USD 57 billion in road, rail, and power infrastructure in Pakistan as part of the project. Militants in Balochistan have carried out a number of attacks targeting construction sites in recent months.
Individuals in Quetta are advised to remain vigilant at all times and report any suspicious objects or behavior to the relevant authorities.
Due to a high threat from terrorism throughout Pakistan, as well as kidnapping and sectarian violence, some Western governments advise their citizens against nonessential travel to the country. Foreign nationals, and in particular Westerners, may be directly targeted.