Long live free and united Balochistan

Long live free and united Balochistan

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World in the dark about Baloch refugee’s miserable condition

World in the dark about Baloch refugee’s miserable condition
November 24, 2009

Talk by Aziz Baloch at the “Baluchistan International Conference –Strategies For & Challenges before National Liberation”

I’d like to congratulate the American Friends of Baluchistan for organizing this conference in Washington DC on this important day to commemorate the extra judicial killing of Baloch hero and freedom fighter Shaheed Mir Balach Marri.

Thanks for giving me an opportunity to speak about the miserable, inhuman conditions of displaced Bugti and Marri tribes in Baluchistan and about the Baloch affected by the nuclear explosions in Baluchistan in 1998. Balochistan has been kept in the dark shadows and hidden behind a curtain of censorship, therefore the Baloch refugee’s conditions are not well known by the international community.

In this information age, the world has become a global village. In any corner of the world if something happens, the media immediately informs the rest of humanity. Imagine an innocent boy in one corner of the world trapped under debris, his voice is being heard by the rescuers who are trying to save the child, the media is showing that shot and the entire world anxiously watches every second.

On the other hand, villages of unarmed Baloch nomads are being bombed indiscriminately by Pakistan’s army by U.S.-supplied jets and helicopters. It is a terrifying situation where innocent victims are desperately searching a path for safety, but their painful tragedy is blacked out by Islamabad’s control on the media.

My friends, all information is openly available today. From social media on the internet to broadband news casts on cell phones, there is an overload of news and information. That is what makes the lack of news about the activities in occupied Balochistan. This is a depressing example of the censorship that occurs almost on a daily basis when it comes to the socio-political life of stateless people living under foreign occupation.

On March 17, 2005 in Balochistan the Pakistan army repeated its dark history of 1971. Those who are old enough can recall at that time millions of Bengalis were massacred by Pakistani army. On March 17, 2005 the home of Shaheed Nawab Akbar Bugti, former governor and chief minister of Balochistan, in his hometown of Dera Bugti was bombed from the orders of former Pakistan coup plotter and dictator quote unquote “President” Pervez Musharraf, who respected Selig S. Harrison described as “America’s favorite’s dictator.” As many as 70 innocent Baloch civilians were massacred in one day, including children, women, and the elderly. Many of the martyrs were Hindus, exposing the true face of the Pakistani state as also the secular nature of Baloch society.

Since then thousands of Baloch have been displaced. The story of Abdullah Bugti is a chilling one, who has been displaced because of Pakistan military operations in Balochistan. This is enough to prove that crimes against humanity are being committed on the Baloch nation with impunity. Quote “We walk 20 days to save our lives, on the way my two children and 50 year old uncle died; we buried them without coffins, shower and a proper funeral.”

Like Abdullah Bugti, thousands other Bugti and Marri were forced to leave their once vibrant villages. Villages that date back generations before the idea of Pakistan were conceived in London in the 1940s. They are forced to flee fear for their lives. They left behind everything. Pakistan army has burnt their farms, huts and took their livestock to their army camps.

Does anyone in the world, and more specifically at Capitol Hill, know about the exodus of unarmed Bugti and Marri Baloch tribesmen whose land is named after them and Baloch are being forced out of villages to save their lives. Thousands have disappeared. Pakistan secret agencies have abducted them and the victims include women, children, and the elderly. Quite a few ended up in jail where they were tortured, raped, and inhumanely treated and many presumably killed, though their families are unsure. Does anyone in the world care about these internally displaced children, who will suffer psychologically for the rest of their lives? Does the United Nations know that in last five years Pakistan army, collectively non-Baloch, made many areas of Balochistan no go areas? They have put more than 600 check posts across Balochistan for the Baloch people to control citizens of Balochistan and prevent their free movement in their own homeland?

Along side those crimes the Army and Frontier Constabulary, called {FC} a Para military force have been making unexpected raids on Baloch houses in the night, treating them inhumanely, and showing disrespect to their women. If this is not colonialism then what is it? Now for anyone who has even briefly studied the history of the relationship between the Baloch people and their occupiers, they already know that these are rhetorical questions. The answer is obvious.

So the question that remains and needs answering is why doesn’t the world know about the plight of the Baloch people?

According to official figures, internally displaced Bugti and Marri tribesmen are 84,000 but Baloch sources estimated that to be about 250,000 because they consist of extended family. About 10,000 families in province of Sindh and thousands are not counted as displaced as they have become a burden on their relatives within Balochistan and province of Sindh. More then 10,000 families are living as refugees in Afghanistan.

Pakistani media blacks out the story about the internally displaced Baloch and denies access to international media when it comes to reporting stories about Baluchistan. The New York Times correspondent Carlotta Gall knows about this personally as she was beaten up in Quetta.

Pakistan as an official ally of the United States in the “war on terror” has used the U.S. supplied weapons against Baloch nomads, their villages and their schools. Shaheed Nawab Akbar Bugti himself told New York Times reporter Carlotta Gall, the weapons they found were clearly marked “made in U.S.A.” and were shown to her as evidence. The reporter as an eyewitness writes “Indeed, huge crates and fragments from American-designed MK-82 bombs lay beside a badly damaged school in the village of Mararar.” (April 2006 New York Times).

More than 11 years ago Pakistan conducted nuclear tests in the Raskoh district Chaghai Balochistan. Baloch nomads were forced by Pakistani army to leave their ancestral land. Majority of them left without compensation. The nuclear tests destroyed their peaceful life.

Baloch nomads have suffered from skin disease, cancer, hepatitis and mothers give birth to abnormal babies with lack of body organs such as legs or hands.

Their livestock perished. Nomads were left without their main source of survival. But the Pakistani media maintained complete silence, everything sat pretty as there were no reports about the losses, hardship and sickness of Baloch people.

The government officials and doctors kept their lips sealed for fear of losing their jobs. The pro-state Mullahs through their preaching tried to satisfy by saying to the nomad Baloch whatever is happening in the region is from Allah, Muslim God. Humans can do nothing.

Eleven years passed but to date no environmental expert has visited the affected region nor assessed the environmental, displaced nomad health, their farms, property, and livestock losses and damages.

Unfortunately, there have been no signs of mercy or humanity by the Pakistani government, its local NGO’S and the military towards the displaced person and their miserable condition.

Even United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees based in Pakistan {UNCHR} deliberately discriminated against Baloch displaced by not helping them, except UNICEF and OXFAM according to the native Baloch reporters.

On December 9, 1948, the United Nations adopted article 11, pertaining to

Genocide and

Defined acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, national, ethnic, racial or religious groups.

I will mention three crimes against the Baloch nation, 1)-Destroying them as a

Nation 2) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to the members of the groups, 3) deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about physical destruction in whole or in part.

I also would like to draw your attention here about the “Human Rights Watch” report 2009, which summarizes that Iran deliberately targeted Sunni Baloch. “The 2008 execution of two Sunni clerics in Zahedan.. The destruction of the Abu-Hanifeh Sunni religious school near Zahedan, and the arrest of 11 Sunni clerics”.

The Asian Human Rights Commission reports titled “Pakistan: Police threaten indiscriminate revenge killings in Balochistan.”

According to the international law any state around the world commits genocide against the United Nation peacekeeping force is permitted to intervene in that conflict zone; Therefore Baloch nationalist leaders demanded the United Nations to deploy its forces in Balochistan to stop further ongoing genocides.

Through this conference, on behalf of our entire Baloch nation we appeal to the United Nations, United States of America, Canada, The European Union, and Russia to help the oppressed nation.

Because their occupiers, Pakistan and Iran show no tolerance for freedom and democracy for oppressed. They have been igniting extremism in Balochistan to keep the Baloch secular forces weak who are the true allies of international community. The international community should know indigenous Baloch have been stripped of every fundamental human right, many of the blessings that those of us who live with here in the West take for granted.

For many decades Baloch have struggled peacefully for their birth right in their own land but instead of rights their prominent leaders are being assassinated, facing extra judicial killing, and their religious scholars and youth are being executed. We have been pushed to the wall and have every right to defend our national survival by all means possible.

If you are still left wondering, why such a minimums number of people are aware of the tragedy that has befallen the Baloch people in Pakistan and Iran, well my friends the answer is not difficult.

The fact of the matter is that even today in the year 2009 the use of censorship is still very much taking place in Pakistan and Iran.

And what greater place to start than right here in the stronghold of democracy, as also Pakistan’s main financier Washington DC.

My friends I want to leave you tonight on this thought, a quote from one of the greatest presidents in American history, President John F. Kennedy who said “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.”

You have been a wonderful audience, Thank you.


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