A woman suicide bomber from a Pakistan separatist group killed four people in an attack on a van carrying staff from China’s Confucius Institute at the University of Karachi.
In surveillance footage shared to Twitter on Tuesday, the woman can be seen standing by the entrance gate of the institute with her back towards an approaching white van before an explosion occurs.
The attack was claimed by The Baloch Liberation Army’s Majeed Brigade, who is also responsible for several previous attacks on Chinese nationals in Pakistan.
The suicide bomber was identified as Shari Baloch, whom the group says was their first woman assailant involved in suicide attack. “Baloch Liberation Army accepts responsibility of today’s self-sacrificing attack,” Jeeyand Baloch, the group’s spokesperson, said in a statement.
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The Chinese Embassy in Pakistan confirmed the deaths of three Chinese teachers and called on Pakistan “to make every effort to treat the wounded, conduct a thorough investigation of the attack, and severely punish the perpetrator.”
“The Chinese embassy and consulates in Pakistan strongly condemn this terrorist act, express deep condolences to the victims of the two countries and sincere condolences to the injured and their relatives, and will make every effort to deal with the incident along with the Pakistani side,” the embassy wrote in a statement.
A University of Karachi spokesperson identified the victims as lecturers Ding Mufang and Chen Sa and the director of the institute, Huang Guiping. The driver of the van, who was Pakistani, was also killed. Wang Yuqing, another Chinese national, was injured in the attack.
Chinese nationals have long been the targets of separatists from Balochistan, a province where Beijing is involved in infrastructure plans as part of its Belt and Road Initiative, who resent the presence of foreign miners in the region.
Pakistan’s new Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, who took office on April 11, denounced the attack in a statement released to Twitter.
“I am deeply grieved on the loss of precious lives including of our Chinese friends in the heinous attack in Karachi today. My heartfelt condolences go to the bereaved families,” Sharif tweeted. “I strongly condemn this cowardly act of terrorism. The perpetrators will surely be brought to justice.”