Jul 07, 2011

Balochistan: Families Demand Return of Missing Brothers

Baloch victims of a recent series of killings suggest continued systematic targeting of human rights activists and indigenous communities.

Below is an article published by Daily Times:

A teenage girl and a woman, both from very poor families and residents of Turbat, have demanded world humanitarian organisations and the United Nations to play their decisive role for safe and instant recovery of their missing brothers Ghulam Qadir and Mazhar Baloch.

“Qadir, a schoolteacher, Mazhar and Khalid Jan were kidnapped by security forces from their residences in Nasirabad area of Turbat on May 22. The mutilated body of Khalid Jan was found dumped along the road next day while whereabouts of other two are still unknown,” said sister of Ghulam Qadir while addressing a news conference outside the Quetta Press Club on Wednesday [June 6, 2011]. 

According to them, a slip was found near the body in which the killers had threatened that soon they would dump the mutilated bodies of Qadir and Mazhar. “We are two hundred percent sure that they were kidnapped by security forces because security personnel in uniform had carried out several raids at our residences and violated the sanctity of our homes,” they said. “It is surprising that the superior courts and judges are endorsing and ignoring this matter,” they claimed

“We are citizens of this state but why our people are being kidnapped and brutally killed at the hand of government functionaries,” questioned the teenaged girl with tears rolling down from her cheeks. 

“The Kech district is not same and peaceful as it was before 2005. Five of our relatives were kidnapped and their dead bodies were found in recent months and many more went missing. We approached Balochistan High Court and judicial commission with no avail,” she said, adding that the rulers, including the judges, refused to listen the plea because they were very poor and voiceless.

They said that the local politicians and social activists also expressed their inability to help them on this issue. “The people’s representatives told us that they are helpless before the very powerful state functionaries. Turbat police also refused to register an FIR,” they added. We are very poor and borrowed money to come to Quetta from Turbat, which is over 1000 kilometers away from the provincial capital with the hope that our voice will be heard.

They said that there were a large number of families who wanted to approach Balochistan High Court (BHC) and concerned officials but they couldn’t do so because of financial difficulties. “We appeal to media to pay a visit to Turbat and inquire about the relatives of missing persons so that they come to know about the deteriorating situation and can assess the prevailing sense of insecurity in our area,” they said.

According to Qadir Baloch, who has been observing hunger for a year for early release of his missing son Jalel Riki, central leader of Baloch Republican Party (BRP), said that as many as 162 dead bodies of missing persons were found from different areas of the province but it was great irony that government was pretending to be clueless about those behind these brutal killings. 

“Everyone knows who is killing and dumping the Baloch political opponents, thus, we appeal to the international humanitarian organisations to take notice of the deteriorating human rights situation in Balochistan,” Baloch said in the news conference at the camp of the missing people outside Quetta Press Club.