China has temporarily closed down the consular section of its embassy in Pakistan due to “technical issues”, days after advising Chinese citizens in this country to be cautious due to the deteriorating security situation.
The embassy announced this on its website, refraining from providing specific information about the nature of the “technical issue” or the timeline for the closure.
“Due to technical issues, the consular section of the Chinese Embassy in Islamabad will be temporarily closed from February 13, 2023, until further notice,” the notice said.
The notification follows last week’s notice by the Chinese government, advising Chinese citizens to be cautious while in Pakistan, saying they might be at risk due to a deteriorating security situation.
Pakistan has seen a rise in terror attacks since late last year when the Pakistani Taliban group called off a fragile truce with the government.
Various terrorist groups in Pakistan have frequently attacked Chinese nationals working on the ambitious China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), aiming to threaten a major segment of Beijing’s Belt and Road infrastructure initiative.
The CPEC is a USD 65 billion network of roads, railways, pipelines, and ports in Pakistan connecting China to the Arabian Sea.
The BRI is expected to help Pakistan expand and modernise its economy.
A female suicide bomber last April killed three Chinese teachers in Karachi along with their local driver, targeting nationals from Pakistan’s most important partner and seeking to undermine a relationship on which Islamabad’s financial survival largely depends.