Rep. Rohrabacher Introduces Bill Recognizing Baluchistan’s Right to Self-Determination on US Congress


Washington, D.C. – Feb 17: Today, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) introduced a House Concurrent Resolution that the Baluchi nation has a historic right to self-determination. Baluchistan is currently divided between Pakistan, Iran, and Afghanistan with no sovereign rights of its own.

In Pakistan especially, the Baluchi people are subjected to violence and extrajudicial killing. The bill states that the Baluchi people “have the right to self-determination and to their own sovereign country; and they should be afforded the opportunity to choose their own status.”

“The Baluchi, like other nations of people, have an innate right to self-determination,” says Rohrabacher. “The political and ethnic discrimination they suffer is tragic and made more so because America is financing and selling arms to their oppressors in Islamabad.”

Historically Baluchistan was an independently governed entity known as the Baluch Khanate of Kalat which came to an end after invasions from both British and Persian armies. An attempt to regain independence in 1947 was crushed by an invasion by Pakistan. Today the Baluchistan province of Pakistan is rich in natural resources but has been subjugated and exploited by Punjabi and Pashtun elites in Islamabad, leaving Baluchistan the country’s poorest province.

Reps. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) and Steve King (R-IA) have also signed on as original co-sponsors of the bill.

Rep. Rohrabacher is Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 17, 2012
Contact: Tara Setmayer
202-225-2415
ATTACHMENT

112TH CONGRESS
2D SESSION H. CON. RES. ____

Expressing the sense of Congress that the people of Baluchistan, currently divided between Pakistan, Iran, and Afghanistan, have the right to self-determination and to their own sovereign country.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Mr. ROHRABACHER submitted the following concurrent resolution; which was referred to the Committee on _____________________________

CONCURRENT RESOLUTION

Expressing the sense of Congress that the people of Baluchistan, currently divided between Pakistan, Iran, and Afghanistan, have the right to self-determination and to their own sovereign country.

Whereas the people of Baluchistan have maintained a proud and distinctive national, cultural, and religious identity dating back to ancient times; Whereas in 1666, the Baluch Khanate of Kalat was founded which functioned as an independent, sovereign country.

Whereas in the 19th century, the Baluch people were conquered and divided by the imperialist expansion of Persia (Iran) and the British Empire.

Whereas on August 15, 1947, the Khan of Kalat declared independence, only to have Baluch aspirations crushed by an invasion by Pakistan in April 1948 followed by 2 years of a bloody campaign to stamp out popular resistance.

Whereas revolts in 1958, 1973, and 2005 indicate continued popular discontent against rule by Islamabad, and the plunder of its vast natural wealth while Baluchistan remains the poorest province in Pakistan;

Whereas a popular insurgency is also under way in Sistan-Baluchistan and being met by brutal repression by the dictatorship in Iran which has added religious bigotry to tyranny; and Whereas it is the policy of the United States to oppose aggression and the violation of human rights inherent in the subjugation of national groups as currently being shown in Iran and Pakistan against the aspirations of the Baluch people:

Now, therefore, be it Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), That it is the sense of Congress that the people of Baluchistan, currently divided between Pakistan, Iran, and Afghanistan, have the right to self-determination and to their own sovereign country and they should be afforded the opportunity to choose their own status among the community of nations, living in peace and harmony, without external coercion.

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