Police: Gunmen storm hotel in Pakistan, kill 9 foreigners

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (CNN) -- Gunmen burst into a hotel in northern Pakistan early Sunday, killing nine foreigners, the interior minister said.

The victims were six Ukrainians and three Chinese, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan told parliament on Sunday. He said a Chinese man managed to escape and is safe.

"The attackers abducted two local guides and demanded they take them to where some foreigners are staying to carry out the attack," Khan said. "One (guide) was then killed, another escaped and has been detained by police for questioning."

Earlier, officials said 10 foreigners had been killed. Authorities said the death toll changed due to difficult communications and the area's remote location.

The attack took place between midnight and 1 a.m., said Ali Sher, a senior police official. "This was not a big hotel, just a small log/hut type lodge, so no major security," he added.

He said the violence occurred in Fairy Meadows in Gilgit Baltistan province. It's unclear how many attackers were at the scene.

Pakistani state TV reported that the interior minister has suspended the provincial chief secretary and the inspector general of police.

A spokesman for Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan said an affiliated group carried out the attack.

The Pakistan Taliban targeted the foreigners because the international community supports drone strikes, said spokesman Ihsanullah Ihsan.

The attack was also to avenge the killing of Emir Wali-ur-Rehman in a drone strike in Waziristan last month, the spokesman said.

Rehman was the Pakistan Taliban's No. 2 leader.