ISLAMABAD   -   Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday condemned the deadly attack on a luxury hotel in Gwadar, saying the terror strike was an effort to sabotage the country’s economic projects and prosperity while the military said that five people including four hotel workers and a Navy soldier were martyred in the attack.

Giving details of the operation on Sunday, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) directorate said three terrorists were killed and five people, including four hotel workers and a Pakistan Navy soldier, were martyred in Saturday’s attack on the luxury hotel.

The statement of Army’s media wing said in exchange of fire Navy soldier Abbas Khan embraced martyrdom. It said the clearance operation at the Pearl Continental Hotel, Gwadar, has been completed and also confirmed that six people, including two Army captains, two Navy soldiers and two hotel employees were injured in the attack.

The ISPR said that the terrorists wearing military-style uniforms attempted to enter the hotel with the aim of targeting or making guests hostage. A security guard at the entry  challenged the terrorists, denying them entry to the main hall. However, the terrorists went to staircase leading to the upper floors.

The terrorists opened fire resulting into martyrdom of the security guard, Zahoor. En-route to stairs, the terrorists kept firing indiscriminately resulting in martyrdom of three more hotel employees; Farhad, Bilawal and Awais while two others got injured, according to the directorate’s statement.

It further said that Quick Reaction Forces of Army, Navy and Police immediately reached the hotel, secured guests and staff present in the hotel and restricted terrorists within corridor of the fourth floor.

According to the update on Gwadar hotel operation released by the ISPR directorate, the security forces have completed clearance operation at the hotel. All three terrorists have been killed and their bodies were held for identification.

According to the media directorate, after ensuring safe evacuation of guests and staff, clearance operation was launched to take on the terrorists.

Meanwhile, the terrorists had made CCTV cameras dysfunctional and planted IEDs on all entry points leading to the 4th floor. The security forces managed to establish special entry points to get into the 4th floor, shot dead all the terrorists and cleared the planted IEDs, said the ISPR directorate.

Director General ISPR Major General Asif Ghafoor thanked entire media for responsible reporting and coverage of the operation. “This actually denied terrorists of possible live updates thus facilitated security forces in smooth execution of the operation.”

 In a statement on Sunday, Prime Minister Imran Khan condemned the terrorist attack on the Gwadar hotel.

Appreciating the initial response by security guards and security forces in foiling greater loss to human lives, the prime minister paid rich tributes to the martyred and injured security personnel during the ongoing operation.

“Such attempts especially in Balochistan are an effort to sabotage our economic projects and prosperity. We shall not allow these agendas to succeed. Pakistani nation and its security forces shall defeat them all,” the prime minister resolved.

Agencies add: A spokesman for the Zaver Pearl-Continental Hotel in Gwadar said there were few guests because of the holy month of Ramazan.

The hotel sits on a hilltop overlooking Gwadar port on the Arabian Sea, which is being developed by China as part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a network of roads, railway and pipelines between the two countries.

The Chinese embassy in Pakistan said: “We appreciate the courageous steps taken by Pakistan Army and security agencies.”

Balochistan Chief Minister Jam Kamal Khan said such attacks would “not deter us and Balochistan shall continue on its path to progress”.