Baloch Delegation Informs US Government of Human Rights Violations and Security Concerns
Brussels, 24 March 2014 – Baloch representative Mr. Nasser Boladai and UNPO Programme Manager Ms. Maud Vanwalleghem engaged in meetings with US Congressmen, Senators and policymakers from the 10th-14th of March 2014 in Washington DC (USA). The meetings, organized by the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO), aimed at expanding existing support for the Baloch people, who have been suffering from severe human rights violations.
The recent discovery of mass graves in Balochistan raised the urgent need to inform the international community about the disappearances and extrajudicial killings of Baloch individuals. The resource-rich Balochistan, currently divided between Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan, finds itself in a crucial geo-strategic position. However, the Baloch people have not benefitted from the wealth of their land and are intentionally kept destitute and isolated in order to keep the region under control.
The delegation expressed deep concern about the US financial assistance that is provided to Pakistan, while there are no conditions or transparency tied to these agreements. This results in the military assistance being employed against the secular Baloch, and in fostering extremism in the region through Pakistan’s intelligence service. For the Baloch in Iran, the situation hardly changed since Rouhani came to power, with an increase in executions taking place that notably target the Baloch. While Iran is a multinational country that consists of Ahwazi Arabs, Azerbaijani Turk, Baloch, Fars, Kurds, Lor and Turkmen, minorities are discriminated. Linguistic or cultural manifestations of non-Persian traditions are ruthlessly suppressed, and intentional displacement of people aim at altering the demographic make-up of the region.
In the wake of the 2012 US Congressional hearing on Balochistan, led by Congressmen Rohrabacher, King, Poe and Gohmert, who reiterated their support during this round of meetings, UNPO and the Baloch people call upon the US Government to reconsider their financial assistance to Pakistan and to request more transparency in dealing with this nuclear power.
Follow-up activities on these issues will take place over the course of the coming months in coordination with UNPO.
On the picture from left to right: Congressman Rohrabacher, Mr. Nasser Boladai, Ms. Maud Vanwalleghem