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Attack in Pakistan port kills two soldiers

A gun and bomb attack by militants on a complex outside the strategic port of Gwadar resulted in the death of all eight militants and two soldiers, officials said.

The deep-water port is a major part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) that also encompasses roads and energy projects. It is part of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road Initiative.

China has invested heavily in the southwestern Pakistan province of Balochistan, including developing Gwadar. However, there has been a separatist insurgency there for decades.

Provincial Chief Minister Sarfraz Bugti said eight militants were “neutralised by security forces.”

Two soldiers were also killed, the Pakistan Army said.

The Baloch Liberation Army (BLA), the most prominent of several separatist groups in Balochistan, claimed responsibility for the assault. The BLA has previously been involved in attacks on Pakistani and Chinese interests in the region and elsewhere.