By Aamir Latif
Four policemen were gunned down on Thursday in Pakistan’s southwestern Balochistan province, police said.
Motorbike-riding assailants ambushed a police patrolling van on the outskirts of the provincial capital Quetta killing three policemen on the spot, and injuring a senior official Mubarak Shah, who later succumbed to his injuries at the hospital, city police chief Abdul Razzak Cheema told reporters.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, though Taliban militants and Baloch separatists have been active in the region for the last several years.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif condemned the attack, and directed security forces to arrest the terrorists involved in the assault.
On Monday, a suicide attack in nearby Chaman town that borders neighboring Afghanistan killed the district police chief along with his driver and security guard.
Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), a conglomerate of different militant outfits operating in Pakistan, had claimed responsibility for the suicide attack.
The large Balochistan province, which borders Iran and Afghanistan, has been marred by violence for over six decades, with separatists claiming that it was forcibly incorporated into Pakistan at the end of British rule in 1947.
The province, a gateway to $51 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), has also been facing a deadly wave of sectarian violence for the last decade.
More than 2,000 people, mostly Shiites, have been killed in targeted attacks and suicide bombings in Quetta and other parts of the province in the last 10 years, according to local media reports.Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.