Rich Tribute Paid to Martyrs on the 89th Year of Iranian Occupation of Al-Ahwaz
Toronto, April 26, 2014 – Ahwazi Democratic Popular Front held a gathering in Toronto to commemorate the 89th year of Iranian occupation of Al-Ahwaz. The meeting at the North York Centre was attended by a diverse group of people belonging to the non-Persian nationalities under Iranian occupation. A large number of Al-Ahwazi Arabs, Azeri Turks, Turkoman, Palestinians, Lebanese, Sindhis and Baloch participated to express their commitment and solidarity with the independence struggle of Al-Ahwaz and nations under foreign occupation.
Representatives of ADPF, South Azerbaijani Independence Party, South Turkmenistan National Unity Front, Lebanese community, Palestinian community, World Sindhi Congress and BHRC-Canada paid rich tribute to the martyrs of Al-Ahwaz struggle and condemned the autocratic, discriminatory policies of the Iranian regime toward non-Persian nations in Iran.
The ADPF meeting voiced their concern over the enforced disappearance of Zahid Baloch, leader BSO (Azad) by Pakistani intelligence agencies and expressed firm solidarity with BSO (Azad), and the family of the abducted leader.
The meeting concluded with a group photo of the representatives with the posters and banners of ‘Save Zahid Baloch’ international solidarity campaign to express their firm support to the cause.
Full Text of Speech by Zaffar Baloch, President BHRC – Canada
Save Zahid Baloch; Save the Voice of Freedom
Independence of Al-Ahwaz, Balochistan Crucial for Peace in the Region
In order to understand the value and the essential nature of liberty, nations will have to remember the tragic day when they stopped being free as a people. The memory of that great loss must be kept alive as the blood running in our veins. The great African leader, Nelson Mandela, once said, “For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.”
Little did the Persians know when their army invaded Al-Ahwaz in 1925 and Balochistan in 1928 that this would lead to end of their own freedom as a people. Such is the tragedy of dominant nations who fail to realize the importance of freedom for oppressed nations. Those who have no respect for the freedom of others; do not deserve to be free.
The heroic struggle of the people of Al-Ahwaz for the last 89 years and never giving up the claim to their sovereignty as a nation needs to be recognized today by the world powers and the international community as part of the solution to the conflicts in the region so important for world peace.
Iran’s fascist, theocratic regime, along with Pakistan and Saudi Arabia today are the greatest exponents of global terrorism and a threat not only to the West but also to the peaceful economic development of nations under occupation. It is a shame that such totalitarian states have been granted membership at the UNO while peaceful secular stateless nations have been denied their rightful place. This is like giving a green light to the atrocities and human rights violations committed against oppressed peoples trapped in these artificial states.
Human rights violations, genocide and cultural repression has become a hallmark of nations under occupation that needs a permanent solution to the problem. This political reality has to be recognized by the western democracies and their powerful economic institutions that without internationally recognized and protected political boundaries, the oppressed nations of the world will always be a target of the worst humanitarian crisis by the aggressive, expansionist states.
I would also like to take this opportunity to present before you the case of Zahid Baloch, Chairman, BSO (Azad) who now faces a life-threatening condition in a torture chamber held by Pakistani intelligence agencies. He was illegally abducted by the state security forces on March 18, 2014 from Quetta, Balochistan and is missing since then. He is being subjected to inhuman torture as we speak and his family is helplessly waiting to hear the worst news about his mutilated body to be discovered after being dumped by his executioners.
BHRC appeals to the Canadian government, human rights groups and our friends here in this meeting to express their complete support and solidarity with the campaign to save the life of Zahid Baloch. Baloch Diaspora in the West is raising its voice to save the life of Zahid Baloch whose only crime is that he believed and struggled for in the independence of Balochistan.
BHRC – Canada and the Baloch community will be holding protest meetings in Toronto and appeals to all present here and the peace loving citizens of Canada to join us in voicing their concern for the life of Zahid Baloch, an activist of freedom struggle who knowing the dangers, was willing to sacrifice his life for the cause. To save him is to save the voice of freedom.
In conclusion, the only way to exercise our freedoms and rights and live in peace, we the oppressed nations of Al-Ahwaz, Turkoman, Azeri Turks, Kurds, Sindhis, Kashmiris and Baloch will have to regain our sovereignty and continue our struggle till the independence from occupation.
President BHRC – Canada