The Balochistan provincial governor confirmed that two Chinese nationals were kidnapped in Quetta on Wednesday, May 24. According to officials, unidentified gunmen dressed as police officers stopped a car carrying three Chinese nationals. When the militants attempted to force the victims out of their vehicle, one was able to escape. Security forces have launched an operation to rescue the other two victims.
No group has claimed responsibility for the abduction but Islamist militants are suspected of carrying out the attack. According to local officials, the three Chinese nationals are language teachers in Quetta.
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 province have carried out a number of attacks targeting the construction sites in recent months. On May 13 ten constructions workers were murdered near the southwestern port city of Gwadar.
Individuals present 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, as well as kidnapping and sectarian violence throughout Pakistan, some Western governments advise their citizens against nonessential travel to the country as foreign nationals, and in particular Westerners, may be directly targeted.