European Parliament Hosts Event on Pakistan’s Baluchistan


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STRASBOURG, France, June 8, 2016 /PRNewswire: Baluchistan House, in partnership with Members of the European Parliament, hosted an event in the European Parliament in Strasbourg on the topic of “Pakistan’s Baluchistan: Its Human Rights Abuses”.

The conference was attended by MEPs, European Commission officials, Representatives from Think Tanks, European Parliament Staff and Baluch diaspora.

Tarek FatahMr. Tarek Fatah, Executive Director, Baluchistan House, mentioned that Pakistan, through its military and its intelligence agency the ISI, has been historically engaged in systematic human rights abuses in the region of Baluchistan. The ISI practices oppression in a multitude of forms to curb the legitimate demand of the Baluch community. The Baluch people live in a constant atmosphere of fear and insecurity, as the Pakistani army and ISI unleash a brutal human rights regime in the region. One of the most covert means allegedly employed by the army to subdue the legitimate aspirations of the Baluch people is enforced disappearance.

Custodial killings have become the order of the day in Baluchistan. As recently as March 2016, two Baluch victims of enforced disappearance, whose names and details were part of record, were  killed and dumped in Awaran in a staged encounter. BRP member, Sarwar s/o Haso Baluch was killed and dumped in the Chorchori area of Mashkay, having been abducted on 27 February this year, apparently by state force.

The Baluch people claim that soldiers are carrying out arbitrary arrests, humiliating families, maiming civilians, carrying out enforced disappearance and conducting summary executions. Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence does not even want an open discussion on what is going on in Baluchistan.

Barbara KappelMs. Barbara Kappel, Member of the European Parliament, mentioned that mass killings, disappearances of thousands of people and extrajudicial executions are the grim reality of Baluchistan. The Pakistani army and various intelligence agencies do not share complete information with each other about their independent operations. She further mentioned that a decision made by even an army subaltern carries more weight than that of a high court judge. Disappeared Baluch persons from Pakistani Baluchistan have been denied the right to a proper arrest and to a fair trial. There has been evidence of inhuman torture on many of the disappeared persons. Some have eventually been killed, while others have been dumped, more dead than alive.

Mr. Alberto Cirio, Member of the European Parliament, said that although Pakistan is a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which guarantees fundamental freedoms and rights to all the citizens of a country, the plight of the Baluch minority is pretty sordid, and mired in a systematic abuse of human rights, showing contempt of all international humanitarian laws. The international community and human rights organizations must take urgent steps to prevent the everyday genocide of Baluch people.

SOURCE Baluchistan House

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