Six Pakistan policemen killed while trying to protect Spanish tourist

Six Pakistan policemen killed while trying to protect Spanish tourist
Peshawar: At least six Pakistani tribal policemen, escorting a Spanish cyclist, were today killed and the tourist critically injured as militants tried to abduct him in the highly volatile southwest Balochistan province.

Militants tried to abduct a Spanish tourist, travelling on a bicycle from Dalbandin area of Balochistan, triggering an exchange of gunfire between the militants and Levies personnel, the local tribal police.

At least six Levies men were killed during the clash while ten others, including the Spanish national, were injured.

The kidnapping bid that occurred in Koshak area was foiled while all the injured were shifted to a nearby hospital in Mastung district.

The Levies personnel were accompanying the Spaniard - said to be a cycling tourist who was coming through Iran into Pakistan - for security. It is customary in Pakistan to have police escort foreigners in restive areas.

The condition of the tourist is reported to be critical. One of the attackers was also killed during the exchange of gunfire.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack.

The local administration sought additional deployment of Frontier Corps and Anti-Terrorist Force personnel.

The attack comes a day after an explosion ripped through a bus carrying Shia pilgrims in the restive Mastung district, killing 24 people.

Balochistan, that borders Iran and Afghanistan, is one of Pakistan's most unstable provinces, and is plagued by sectarian bloodshed.

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