Islamabad:At least five people including two policemen were killed on Friday in a terrorist attack near the Chinese Consulate in Pakistan's port city of Karachi, police and hospital officials said.
Deputy Inspector General of Police of Karachi South Region Javed Alam confirmed that two policemen and three other unidentified persons were killed when a group of terrorists opened fire at them near the consulate in the diplomatic zone where several other foreign missions are located in Clifton area of Karachi.
Around three to four terrorists reached the area and started firing and hurled a couple of hand grenades at the police personnel deployed for security in the area.
Director of the Jinnah Hospital Karachi Seemi Jamali told media that overall five bodies and one injured have been shifted to the hospital.
Two of the deceased were recognized as police personnel but the others have not been identified yet, said the hospital director.
Soon after the firing began, police, security forces and commandos of the Pakistan Army rushed to the site and cordoned off the area.
Karachi's police chief Amir Sheikh said at least three terrorists have been killed in the shootout with the security forces. Two suicide jackets were also recovered from the killed terrorists, the police chief said.
The firing has stopped and security forces and police are conducting a search operation, the police chief said.
The bomb disposal squad is clearing the area and is defusing the explosive devices planted by the terrorists, police said.
All roads leading to the diplomatic enclave have been closed for public and media. A state of emergency has been declared in all the hospitals in the city.
A separatist group, the Balochistan Liberation Army, reportedly claimed the attack but there was no official confirmation about it.
Prime Minister Imran Khan "strongly condemned the firing incident " saying it was part of a conspiracy against the Pakistan and China economic and strategic cooperation.
"However, such incidents will never be able to undermine Pakistan-China relationship that is mightier than Himalaya and deeper than Arabian sea," Khan said.
India on Friday strongly condemned the terror attack on the Chinese Consulate in Karachi that claimed the lives of at least six people.
"India strongly condemns the terrorist attack on the Chinese Consulate in Karachi this morning," the External Affairs Ministry said in statement.
"We condole the loss of lives in this dastardly attack," it said.
Stating that there can be no justification whatsoever for any act of terrorism, it said: "The perpetrators of this heinous attack should be brought to justice expeditiously. Such terrorist attacks only strengthens the resolve of the international community to combat terrorism in all its forms and manifestations."