SEATTLE: Members of the Baloch community in the Pacific Northwest region of North America are holding a rally in Seattle at Westlake Park this Sunday 16 Mar 2014, to protest human rights abuses in Balochistan.
Baloch Dorazahi, one of the organizers of the event, said members of the Baloch community from Vancouver city in neighboring Canada will also join them in their protest.
“Our main purpose is to raise a voice against human rights violations in Balochistan and to bring awareness in the people of the Pacific Northwest about what is happening in Balochistan,” Dorazahi said.
The people in Seattle are very familiar with the dirty wars in South American countries in the 60s and 70s, Dorazahi said. “We want to tell them that similar kinds of crimes against humanity are also being committed in Balochistan right now.”
Seattle is the largest city in the Pacific Northwest famously known for being the headquarters of tech-giants such as Microsoft and Amazon.com as well as the Boeing Company, world’s leading airplane manufacturer.
The city is also believed to have the largest Baloch population in the country.
The organizers aim to garner support for their protest from other communities in the area as well. In a Facebook event titled “PROTEST: Stop Human Rights Violations in Balochistan”, they are asking rights groups and civil society members to join them in their protest.
“We want to show solidarity with the victims of enforced disappearance and their family members,” Dorazahi said while admiring the efforts of Mama Qadeer Baloch and Farzana Majeed of the Voice for Baloch Missing Persons, a Balochistan-based activist group of the relatives of the disappeared Baloch.
Qadeer Baloch and Majeed of the VBMP, accompanied by women and children, travelled from Quetta on foot for four months and covered a distance of almost 3,000 kilometers before reaching Islamabad early this month. Their journey aimed at the safe recovery of their missing relatives.
The VBMP puts the number of the missing Baloch close to 19,000 and alleges Pakistan’s intelligence agencies and their death squads for the disappearances. Pakistan’s government, however, denies the charge.
The protesters on Sunday will also demand from the US government to stop Pakistan’s military aid, which they believe is used to crush the Baloch people rather than to fight the religious extremists in the northwest tribal regions of the country who pose a great threat to the whole region and world peace at large.
The rally will start at 3 p.m. local time and will continue until 7 p.m. “American taxpayers’ money should not be used to commit gross human rights violations,” the organizers said in their Facebook event.
Courtesy: Baloch Hal