For several years, Pakistan has been facing a separatist insurgency by ethno-nationalist rebels belonging to the Baloch ethnic group. The guerrillas in the southwest province of Balochistan have become increasingly daring with their attacks. Two weeks ago, they shocked the rest of Pakistan by destroying the historic residence of Pakistan’s founding father Mohammed Ali Jinnah in the town of Ziarat.
Balochistan is one of the most underdeveloped regions in Pakistan, and has traditionally had a heavily male-dominated patriarchal society. Women have rarely had a role in public life. But things have been changing recently, as increasing numbers of women are taking up active and leading roles in the Baloch nationalist movement.