ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has asked to immediately investigate the incident of killings of nine Pakistanis and hold to account those involved in this heinous crime.

“It is a horrifying and despicable incident and we condemn it unequivocally. We are in touch with Iranian authorities and have underscored the need to immediately investigate the incident and hold to account those involved in this heinous crime,” Foreign Office spokesperson Mumtaz Zahra Baloch said in response to media queries regarding reports of a terrorist incident killing Pakistani nationals in Iran.

She said that Pakistan’s Consul in Zahedan is on way to the hospital where injured people are being treated and will reach there in a few hours due to long distances and security imperatives involved. She said that the Consul will also meet local authorities, and among other things, impress upon them the urgent need for strong action against the perpetrators of this crime.

“We are fully seized of this grave matter and are taking all necessary measures in this regard,” she said, adding that Pakistan’s embassy will do its best to repatriate dead bodies at the earliest.

“Such cowardly attacks cannot deter Pakistan from its determination to fight terrorism,” the spokesman vowed. Earlier in the day, Iranian media reported that unknown gunmen shot to death nine people in the southeastern part of Iran that borders Pakistan.

According to the reports, the shooting took place in a home near the town of Saravan, in Iran’s Sistan and Baluchestan province. Those killed were Pakistani labourers mostly from Punjab who were working in Iran for the last many years. The incident comes a day after Pakistan and Iran fully restored their diplomatic ties following days of tension when Tehran launched strikes inside Pakistani territory last week which led to escalation of tension between the two neighbouring countries. Pakistan also had carried out retaliatory strikes inside Iran targeting Baloch separatists “hideouts” besides downgrading diplomatic ties until Friday when the two countries sent their envoys to each other’s capital to restore the ties.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024


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