QUETTA: At least 20 people were killed and three others injured when terrorists opened fire on a labour camp in Balochistan’s Turbat area in the early hours of Saturday.
The murdered labourers belonged to Sindh and Punjab provinces and were working on a bridge at Sohrab Dam in Gagdan area of Turbat.
The bodies and injured have been shifted to Turbat Hospital.
Commissioner Makran Pasand Khan Buledi told Geo News that 16 of the dead belonged to Sadiqabad and Rahim Yar Khan while four hailed from Hyderabad.
The incident took place at around 1:30AM, he added.
Buledi said that unidentified gunmen, riding motorcycles, attacked the camp, built for labourers working on a bridge at Sohrab Dam in Gagdan area.
Police and other security forces have cordoned off the area after reaching at the site, he said.
The commissioner said that all check posts and security stations have been alerted.AFP Adds
: Akbar Hussain Durrani a senior administration official said the labourers were lined up and shot after the terrorists asked for their identity. Hussain further said that security personnel guarding the camp had fled when confronted by a large number of attackers.
Nobody has claimed responsibility for the incident but Hussain said insurgents have attacked non-Baloch settlers in the area in the past.
There was a security lapse in Turbat: CM
Chief Minister Balochistan Dr Abdul Malik Baloch said there was a security lapse in Turbat and action would be taken against those guards responsible for it. “The Turbat incident was a result of Levies negligence”.
Speaking to Geo News Dr Baloch condemned the horrific incident in Turbat and said efforts were underway to improve the security situation in the province. “Is murdering the poor justice,” the chief minister asked.
The chief minister added the provincial government would provide security to labourers in the area.
Earlier the chief minister summoned a report of the attack and directed authorities to arrest those responsible. Compensation of Rs1 million for the victims’ families and Rs50,000 for the injured was also announced.
Eight Levies personnel arrested
Security forces informed Geo News that eight Levies personnel had been arrested. These personnel were accused of fleeing when terrorists attacked the camp of labourers’ in Turbat.
Levies personnel did not repulse attack: Home Minister
Balochistan Home Minister Mir Sarafarz Bugti said an order had been passed to arrest security personnel who had failed to resist the terrorist attack.
The minister said police and Levies personnel didn’t repulse the attack and an inquiry has also been ordered against the personnel who were deployed for security of the labourers.
“There is no place in police for such personnel”, he said, adding that a search operation has also been launched in the area to arrest the attackers.
PM Nawaz condemns attack
Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif strongly condemned the attack in Turbat resulting into the killing of 20 labourers.
Expressing his grief and shock he sought immediate report on the incident. The prime minister directed provincial government and law enforcement agencies to ensure that all steps were taken for bringing the culprits to justice.
Extending condolences to the bereaved families Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said the government was committed to eradicating the menace of terrorism and extremism from the country.