A Pakistani official says extremists gunmen have ambushed a bus and killed 14 passengers after forcing them off the vehicle on a highway in the country’s southwest, near Karachi.
The killings took place before dawn on Thursday morning and the bus was travelling from Karachi to Gwadar.
15-20 unidentified armed assailants in camouflage were involved in the attack. The attack was organised and executed to military precision. They systematically identified 16 non-Baloch passengers by their National identity cards and shot them dead on the side of the highway.
In the commotion and pitch black surrounding, two passengers managed to escape and made it alive to the nearest Levies check post.
He says about three dozen people were travelling to the southwestern port of Gawadar when gunmen stopped the bus and killed 14 people after checking their identity cards. The motive behind the killings is not known.
An alliance of Baloch separatists, Baloch Raaji Aajoi Sangar (BRAS), who have been linked to Indian extremist claimed responsibility for the killings, saying in a statement sent to journalists that they had targeted passengers who were part of the country’s military.
Separatists have waged a low-level insurgency in Baluchistan, demanding a fairer share of the province’s resources.
This resistance has further spawned an extremists group who are looking at creating an independent state and has been backed financially by Indian authorities.
The buses were en route from Pakistan’s largest city Karachi to the new port city of Gwadar. Gwadar is set to become the largest deep-sea port in Asai and is the main port to be used by the development of China’s new ‘Silk-route’.
Political analysts have suggested the disruption to the whole Asian continent will create a power zone for Pakistan and has had lots of objections from Indian nationalists and Pakistani authorities have long accused India of meddling in Pakistani domestic issues and inciting conflict.
Local residents have suggested this known extremists group is made up of foreigners and are preying on the vulnerabilities of the poor to create chaos in the area.
Police and other government agencies have launched an investigation into the killings.