October 13, 2016

Conference Report: Land of Forsaken Voices – The Geopolitics of Justice, Impunity and Human Rights in Balochistan

The Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO) releases a report titled “Land of Forsaken Voices: The Geopolitics of Justice, Impunity and Human Rights in Balochistan” following a conference taking place at the prestigious Carnegie Endowment for Democracy in Washington, DC, in May 2016. The report contains the transcripts of all opening remarks and speeches delivered at the event, as well as the speakers’ biographies.

The report contains transcripts of the speeches given at the event, namely of the opening remarks by Mr Nasser Boladai (President of UNPO), by Senator Paul Strauss (D-DC) and UNPO Programme Manager Ms Johanna Green, as well as the transcripts of the instructive expert contributions by Mr T Kumar (Amnesty International USA), Mr Bob Dietz (Committee to Protect Journalists), Mr Malik SIraj Akbar (Editor-in-Chief Baloch Hal), journalist Michael Hughes, Mr Waheed Baloch (President of the Baloch International League for Peace and Freedom) and Mr Paulo Casaca (South Asia Democratic Forum).

Gross human rights violations, such as torture, enforced disappearances and extrajudicial killings are still the order of the day in Pakistan’s westernmost province, Balochistan. Despite local human rights defenders’ struggle to address these systematic abuses, Islamabad uses intimidation tactics to silence anyone who dares bringing these heinous crimes to light. Meanwhile, Pakistan’s partners in the West pay mere lip service to changing the horrendous status quo. Their half-hearted approach oscillates between public allegiance to international human rights norms and realpolitik based on considerations of power and economic interests.

Against this background, this event enabled information sharing and wide and open discussion on this topic among supporters of the Baloch cause. To download the full report, please click here.

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