ASIAN HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION – URGENT APPEALS PROGRAMME
The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received updated information regarding the disappearances and extrajudicial killings of youth in Balochistan Province for opposing the China Pakistan Economic Corridor, a huge highway being constructed by China, which has an investment of Rupees 47 billion. The ages of the disappeared and extrajudicially killed range from 16 to 22 years, and they include two student leaders and even one footballer, who is accused of gathering crowds through football matches. According to the Balochistan government, in July, under the “National Plan”, security forces have killed 375 and arrested 13,575 people in nearly 3,000 Military operations.
Balochistan Province continues to suffer the wrath of law enforcement agencies; even by official figures, corpses found are threatening to breach the 1,000 mark in recent years. The real numbers are greater, with violent death scarring the countryside and blotting humanity.
According to official reports, nearly a thousand bullet-ridden corpses have been recovered from various parts of Balochistan in the past six years. Many of these corpses have been unrecognizable, with the faces burnt by the use of acid, a tactic used by the intelligence agencies. The official data also discloses that over 112 persons are still missing in the Province.
Filed under News, Reports
A Written Submission to the 32nd Regular Session of the UN Human Rights Council by the Asian Legal Resource Centre
1. The Asian Legal Resource Centre (ALRC) would like to draw the attention of the UN Human Rights Council to the deteriorating state of freedom of expression in Pakistan. In states like Pakistan, where democracy is little more than fascism behind a façade of democracy, free press is the first casualty. The Constitution and certain legislations authorize the government to curb freedom of speech on subjects that include the Constitution itself, the Armed Forces, the Judiciary, and religion. Harsh blasphemy laws have occasionally been used to suppress the media as well.
Pakistan’s security establishment has been conducting military operations in Balochistan since 2001, to obtain control over the Baloch land and resources. Tortured and bullet-riddled bodies of Baloch missing persons are found daily in the province. Resistance by the cornered populace is perceived as insurgency and a threat to national security. The construction of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor has given the government further excuse to accelerate the military operation against the insurgency fighting for their legitimate right to control their resources.
The Baloch ethnic population perceives the Corridor project as a plan to convert them into a minority in their own homeland, and have openly opposed it on every level. This opposition has fuelled military atrocities such as burning houses and conducting aerial bombardments, victimising children and women.
The Interior Ministry of Baluchistan has recently stated that it has arrested 8363 Baloch over the span of 9 months. Whereas, the Chief Minister of Balochistan Dr. Malik Baloch has said that those arrested will be dealt in accordance with the law.
No further details pertaining to the arrested have been revealed.
The provincial interior minister told reporters at a press conference that 1,800 targeted operations were conducted in the Province between December 2014 and September 2015. The Minister attributed the rise in targeted operations to implementation of the National Action Plan.
A young student of 22 year has entered into 46 days of his hunger strike unto death today. His condition is very critical and there are fears of his slipping into coma as he faints most of the time. The government has completely ignored his hunger strike and forget providing medical help has not even bothered with monitoring his health. This has caused much resentment to the student community in Sindh and Balochistan.
Mr. Lateef Johar, a Baloch student, has gone on the hunger strike unto death to protest against the abduction of Zahid Baloch, Chairman Baloch Student Organization – Azad (BSO-A) on 18 March by the plain cloth persons claiming to be ISI operatives, the notorious intelligence agency. Since his abduction the provincial and the federal governments or the military has refused to acknowledge that Mr. Baloch is in their custody. Please see the Urgent Appeal that the AHRC issued on his abduction.
Mr. Jinnah, could not differentiate between the rule of law and the rule by force which has resulted several military actions in Balochistan
The provincial Interior Minister of Balochistan has stated that a terrorist attack on a passenger train resulting in the death of 18 persons was an attempt to avenge the Frontier Corp (FC) Kalat operation by the militants and Baloch Liberation Army (BLA). The minister tried, as is the usual practice of the government, to place the blame for the deaths on some militant groups in an effort to hide the negligence and failure of the government to protect the people. If the statement of the provincial minister is accepted as correct then it means that the deaths were a result of retaliation by the terrorists against the FC operations and not as a direct result of their operations.