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Ambassador-led Chinese delegation visits explosion site amid high-level probe

MANSEHRA: A Chinese delegation on Thursday visited the Barseen area of Upper Kohistan where a high-level investigation is underway to determine whether the explosion inside a coach – which was carrying the Chinese workers to the under-construction Dasu dam – was a subversive act or a technical fault that caused the engine to explode.

At least 13 people, including nine Chinese nationals, were killed and 41 others injured in the tragedy.

Sources said the joint investigation team comprising experts from Pakistan Army, police, Counter-Terrorism Department, bomb disposal unit of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa found traces of explosives around the area where the coach had fallen into the gorge a day earlier.

Federal Minister for Information Fawad Chaudhry through a tweet confirmed that the investigation into the Dasu incident found traces of explosive and that terrorism in this incident couldn’t be ruled out.

Ambassador Nong Rong-led Chinese delegation was received by Inspector General of Police Moazzam Jah Ansari and Hazara Commissioner Riaz Mehsud at about 12 noon at Dasu.

The Chinese delegation visited the explosion site and subsequently moved to the Barseen camp where the Chinese workers have been stationed.

Nong Rong also enquired about the health and safety of the Chinese engineers and workers executing the 4300 megawatts Dasu Hydropower project.

The delegation, which left Dasu for the federal capital at about 4pm, also talked to the investigation team, IGP and commissioner about the explosion.

The high-ranking officials, including IGP Moazzam Jah Ansari, DIG Mirvais Niaz, also visited the blast site and later moved to the Barseen camp and met the Chinese engineers and workers.

The force commander and other senior army officials also moved to Upper Kohistan and visited the explosion site.

The security of Chinese engineers and workers, executing the development projects under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Initiatives, have been put on high alert after the incident.

“The mobility of the Chinese nationals working at different projects in Hazara division and Gilgit-Baltistan has been restricted for the time being,” sources said.

Thirteen people, including nine Chinese nationals, two personnel of the Frontier Constabulary and two locals, were killed and 28 others sustained injuries when a coach carrying them to an under-construction tunnel site of the 4,300-megawatts Dasu Hydropower Project fell into a ravine in the Upper Kohistan after an explosion on Wednesday.

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