15 Chinese officials part of Dasu incident investigation: Sheikh Rashid



Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid said on Saturday that 15 Chinese officials have been included in the ongoing investigation on the Dasu bus tragedy in which 13 people, including nine Chinese nationals, were killed.

Addressing a press conference in Islamabad, Rashid said that a 15-member team of Chinese investigators had arrived yesterday and visited the incident site with security agency officials.

"The investigation of the event is at its final stages and the highest institutions of Pakistan are investigating it. Fifteen individuals from China have been included [in the investigation] as well," the interior minister said.

Rashid said that the Chinese government had also been taken on board and was being informed about updates as they were received.

"We completely reassure the Chinese government that these culprits, hidden hands and enemies of CPEC (China-Pakistan Economic Corridor) and China-Pakistan friendship will never be forgiven at any cost."

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-megawatt Dasu hydropower project fell into a ravine in the Upper Kohistan area after an explosion on Wednesday.

Although the Foreign Office had initially termed the incident an accident, the government later said traces of explosives had been found, with Information and Broadcasting Minister Fawad Chaudhry saying "terrorism could not be ruled out."

China had later announced that it was sending a team to Pakistan to deal with the aftermath of the incident. “Today China will send a cross-departmental joint working group to Pakistan to help with relevant work,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian had said at a media briefing in Beijing.