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Assailants Gun Down at Least 10 in Pakistan

ISLAMABAD � Unknown gunmen shot dead at least 10 construction workers and wounded several others Saturday in southwestern Pakistan, police said.

The victims were building a road in the port city of Gwadar when assailants on motorbikes fired at them and fled the scene.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the violence.

Suicide bombing

The attack happened a day after an Islamic State suicide bomber killed at least 25 people and wounded 40 others in the province of Baluchistan where Gwadar is located.

That attack, in the town of Mastung, was targeted at Abdul Ghafoor Haideri, deputy chairman of the Pakistani Senate, the upper house of parliament.

Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack on its global media outlet, Amaq News Agency.

The senator was slightly wounded, but his driver and the director of staff at the Senate accompanying him were among those killed.

Haideri is a central leader of JUI-F, which is part of Pakistan's ruling coalition headed by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's party.

Stepped up attacks

IS has stepped up attacks in Pakistan. The Syria-based terrorist group also took credit for the deadliest suicide bombing this year of a Sufi shrine in the southern city of Sehwan in February that killed more than 70 people.

Victims were mostly members of the minority Shi'ite Muslim community.

Baluchistan is the largest of Pakistan's four provinces where a number of militant groups operate.

The province borders Afghanistan and Iran, and officials in both the countries have long alleged militants waging terrorist attacks on their soils operate out of the Pakistani province. Islamabad denies the charges.

Baluchistan is at the center of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, commonly referred to as by its acronym of CPEC. It is a combination of road networks, railway lines and power projects being built in Pakistan with Chinese investment of more than $50 billion.

Source: Voice of America

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