A Chinese engineer working on a CPEC project has been murdered at Port Qasim on the outskirts of Karachi. According to the Karachi police, the 53-year-old Li Wenzhang was first killed and then his body was hanged in a room at Port Qasim. Li had arrived from China six month ago and was working with the 1,320-megawatt Port Qasim Power Project which is being constructed by the Chinese government under the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).
According to Samaa news channel, the port officials was not in favour of post mortem and asked to declare a suicide case but doctors refused to do so.
“The post-mortem has been completed and the deceased (was) murdered and later hanged,” the doctor involved in the post-mortem told the news channel.
Pakistani law enforcement agencies want to make it a suicide case fearing the wrath of the Chinese government, which has been repeatedly asking the Pakistani government to ensure the safety of its nationals working on the various projects under the CPEC—an undertaking that begins in Gwadar and ends in Kashgar, China.
To add to China’s woes, the Gwadar protests against the CPEC has put Beijing in a difficult situation. The latest killing follows the attack by the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) on a bus carrying Chinese workers involved in a power plant project.
China has been asking Pakistan to ramp up the security of its thousands of its workers currently working on various projects of the CPEC following serial attacks on them in recent months. In August this year, 13 people including nine Chinese personnel were killed and several injured in a bomb attack on a bus carrying Chinese engineers to the Dasu area of Upper Kohistan district where a Chinese company is building a 4,300-megawatt hydropower project on the Indus River.
It was followed by two more attacks on Chinese nationals working at the East Bay Expressway project in Gwadar. The attacks prompted an unusually harsh statement from Chinese authorities.
"Recently, the security situation in Pakistan has been severe,” the Chinese Embassy in Islamabad said, adding that it "launched the emergency plan immediately, demanding Pakistan to properly treat the wounded, conduct a thorough investigation on the attack, and severely punish the perpetrators.”
China is especially worried about the TTP, which has called off the ceasefire deal with the Pakistan government. The Chinese government in turn has cracked the whip on the Pakistan government, demanding that it must to step up security of its nationals working in the CPEC projects.