China looking to construct military outposts in Pakistan: Report

Edited By: C Krishnasai
Islamabad Updated: May 20, 2022, 05:08 PM(IST)

China-Pakistan Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

There are thousands of Chinese personnel working in Pakistan on a host of projects being carried out under the aegis of the Belt and Road Initiative’s (BRI) China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects in Karachi, Balochistan, and Gilgit-Baltistan

China is reportedly pressurising Pakistan to let it construct military outposts for its citizens working in Pakistan, in the wake of recent terrorist attacks against the Chinese nationals in the country.

There are thousands of Chinese personnel working in Pakistan on a host of projects being carried out under the aegis of the Belt and Road Initiative’s (BRI) China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects in Karachi, Balochistan, and Gilgit-Baltistan.

This comes a month after a woman suicide bomber from the Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) militant group struck a van on the Karachi University premises, killing three Chinese nationals and their Pakistani driver.

According to News18, which has cited sources from Islamabad, China has for long been demanding security for its citizens. They are looking at places that were earlier used or under the influence of the US during the Cold War and the war on terror.

The sources further claimed that China is trying to persuade Pakistan by promising to roll over debts accruing from the CPEC projects—which the cash-strapped Islamabad had been seeking for long due to the economic crisis.

Watch | Three Chinese nationals among Four killed in Karachi University blast

Pakistan’s all-weather ally China has been facing increasing backlash, especially by the BLA, in the restive Balochistan.

Also read | Pangong bridge: China building it in occupied territory, says India

Balochistan, bordering Iran and Afghanistan, is home to a long-running violent insurgency. Baloch insurgent groups have previously carried out several attacks targeting the USD 60 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects.

The ambitious $60 billion CPEC is a 3,000-km long route of infrastructure projects connecting China’s northwest Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region and the Gwadar Port in the western Pakistan province of Balochistan.

Also read | Woman suicide bomber who killed 3 Chinese was a student at Karachi University

India has protested to China over the CPEC as it is being laid through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK).

(With inputs from agencies)

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