Voice of a Journalist & Human Rights Defender
Eid is the Muslims religious festival to celebrate joyously and wish others happiness and peace. While the Muslim world and other parts of Pakistan rejoice during Eid with their relatives, a number of Baloch families including men, women and children gathered in Quetta to protest against the enforced disappearance of Baloch people.
The Voice for Baloch Missing Persons (VBMP) rallied against enforced kidnappings on this Eid as well, and marched through different roads of the city and later staged a demonstration outside the Quetta Press Club.
It is worth mentioning that families of abducted Baloch have been protesting on Eid every year for the past five years to express their concerns over abduction and custodial killings allegedly by state security forces and intelligence agencies.
According to Mama Qadeer Baloch, vice president of VBMP, they protest to attract international attention of the vast human rights abuses in Balochistan.
VBMP claims there are more than 15,000 missing persons, while more than 1,600 decomposed and bullet-riddled dead bodies have been recovered in different areas of Balochistan. However, the recovered number of bodies from Tutak region mass graves is excluded from these figures.
Previously, VBMP leadership provided the data of missing persons to a UN agency that visited Quetta in 2012. The same organization also held a historic long march from Quetta to Islamabad to highlight the predicament of this humanitarian crisis. They have been appealing the UN, EU, Amnesty International and other humanitarian organizations for help but with little success.
The horrific “kill and dump” policy of Baloch originated under the Musharraf military regime; however the barbaric practice continues unabated despite claims of democracy in Pakistan. The provincial Baloch government of Dr. Malik Baloch have not been able to change the mindset of state policymakers regarding the Baloch genocide, yet Malik claims to have stopped the extrajudicial murder of Baloch political activists.
Regrettably, international humanitarian agencies do not take seriously Baloch abductions and mass graves in Balochistan.
Yousaf Ajab Baloch is a journalist and human rights defender. He is editor-in-chief of The Balochistan Point, an online English newspaper. He is author of a Book: A Battle Field for Balochistan. Follow Yousaf on Twitter@YousafAjab. Read other articles by Yousaf.
August 3, 2014 9:53 am