Six Punjabi labourers shot dead in Balochistan
QUETTA - Unidentified gunmen shot dead six labourers in Quetta, officials said Friday, in the latest bout of violence to rock the restive region.
The murders took place overnight in Lajjey, about 170 kilometres (105 miles) southwest of Quetta, the capital of Balochistan province, where separatist militants are active.
"Unidentified gunmen shot dead six labourers and wounded another, who is in critical condition," local government official Hashim Ghilzai told AFP.
The labourers were working on a mobile tower and were sleeping in tents at the site when the gunmen attacked, Ghilzai said, adding that "it appeared to be an act of terror".
Local security official Tariq-ur-Rehman confirmed the incident and casualties.
No group has claimed responsibility for the killings.
Separatist militants have previously targeted ethnic Punjabi and Sindhi labourers, who are largely considered outsiders in many parts of the province and viewed with deep suspicion.
Hundreds of soldiers and militants have been killed since the insurgency flared up in the mid-2000s.
Pakistan also regularly accuses its eastern neighbour India of funding and arming the separatist insurgents. - APP/AFP