Pakistan's Port of Gwadar Targeted by Armed Gunmen

Gwadar Port at sunset
Updated Published

On Wednesday, March 20th, Gwadar Port in Pakistan was targeted by gunmen in an assault. The “Balochistan Liberation Army,” a separatist group, has claimed the attack.

According to local news, the assailants initiated the attack with explosions, followed by a shootout with security forces, resulting in the death of eight attackers.

Gwadar's deep-water port is a crucial component of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a significant venture backed by China as part of President Xi Jinping's Belt and Road Initiative. Located near the Strait of Hormuz, a vital passageway for oil transportation in the Arabian Sea, Gwadar's strategic importance is undeniable.

Balochistan, the region where Gwadar is located, is endowed with natural resources such as natural gas, coal, and various minerals. Despite its wealth in resources, the area has suffered from underdevelopment and neglect, leading to longstanding issues of separatist insurgencies. The rapid development of Gwadar has raised concerns among locals about displacement and the lack of fair distribution of benefits.

Consequently, numerous separatist and extremist groups have aimed to sabotage the CPEC project, with a particular focus on targeting Chinese workers involved in these development efforts.