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China condemns abduction of its nationals from Quetta amid safety concerns

The Chinese couple, who taught Mandarin in Quetta, were abducted at gunpoint on Wednesday.

world Updated: May 25, 2017 19:51 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis
Sutirtho Patranobis
Hindustan Times, Beijing
Balochistan province,foreign ministry spokesperson Lu Kang,Belt and Road Initiative
A soldier stands guard near the site where two Chinese nationals were kidnapped by gunmen in Quetta.(Reuters)

China on Thursday condemned the kidnapping of two of its nationals in Quetta, the capital of the restive Balochistan province.

The couple, who taught Mandarin in Quetta, were abducted at gunpoint on Wednesday.

“The Chinese government attaches high importance to the safety of Chinese citizens overseas,” foreign ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said during a regular news briefing.

“We condemn all forms of kidnapping activities,” Lu said, adding that the Chinese government was working closely with Pakistani authorities to ensure their release.

Beijing’s remarks came amid safety concerns for its nationals working in Pakistan under the Belt and Road Initiative’s flagship project, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

“After the incident happened, the Chinese government, along with relevant departments, the Chinese embassy in Pakistan and the Chinese consulate general in Karachi, immediately launched the emergency response mechanism,” Lu said.

“We have kept close communication with Pakistan, (and) request relevant Pakistani authorities to take every necessary measure to rescue the abducted while ensuring their safety, and take more effective measures to secure the safety of Chinese citizens and organs in Pakistan.

“The Chinese government will work with the Pakistani side to make the utmost efforts for the early and safe release of the kidnapped personnel.”

First Published: May 25, 2017 19:43 IST