Activists from Balochistan on Monday held protests against the Pakistani government outside the United Nations headquarters in Geneva. They reiterated their demand for a UN probe into human rights violations in the region.
“It has been delayed. It could have happened a long time ago and we have a situation of mass graves where there is no domestic redressed available to the people of Balochistan,” Baloch activist Ahmar Mastikhan told ANI. “Has there been some domestic mechanism for them to have their basic and birth human rights protected, we would not have raised this question. We are happy over the Rohingya rapporteur in Burma, but I assure you, it is more serious issue than Rohingya issue.” The demand for an independent probe was raised after mass graves were discovered Dera Bugti in February, said Baloch Republican Party member Abdul Nawaz Bugti.
Other activists also spoke about what they called a deteriorating situation in the region. “Things have taken nastier turn in the past four to five months,” said Mehran Marri, another activist. “Pakistani military and intelligence agencies are now kidnaping women and children.”
The European Union said they might change policies if the Nawaz Sharif government continued to ignore the issues flagged by the Baloch activists, reported Deccan Chronicle. “For EU it is unacceptable that Pakistan uses violence against people in Balochistan,” said Ryszard Czarnecki, member of European Parliament and European Union.
Asma Jahangir, former Pakistan Human Rights Commission chief, also highlighted the need for swift action in the region. “For Balochistan, human rights question remains as it was in the past,” she said.
The activists had raised their demand for a UN rapporteur on Balochistan on Friday as well at a side event during the 34th Session of UN Human Rights Council. They had also condemned the China Pakistan Economic Corridor at the event. “China has to realize that Pakistan hasn’t even been America’s friend, it will burn their fingers also,” Marri said on Monday.