söndag 1 mars 2009

BHRC: Illegal detention of Baloch women and the sexual crimes

Fax to : 00 1 212 963 4879

Honorable Ban Ki Moon
Secretary General
United Nation Organization
Head Quarters
First Avenue at 46th StreetNew York, NY 10017. USA

Subject: Illegal detention of Baloch women and the sexual crimes
committed against them by the Pakistani Army

Your Excellency,
The Baloch Human Rights Council would like to bring a most urgent matter to your kind attention. For the past three years the Pakistani army has detained tens of hundreds of innocent women, children and old people in the ongoing military operations in Balochistan. Hundreds of women and elderly people have disappeared. They are either believed to have been killed without even the pretence of a trial or are still languishing in various torture cells operated by the military and other intelligence agencies in Balochistan and in other parts of Pakistan.

Recently human rights organizations became aware of the fact that a 23 year old Baloch woman Zarina Marri, a resident of Kahan district (in the province of Balochistan) and a school teacher by profession, was still alive, but, was being kept by the Pakistani military officers as a sex slave. Previously it was thought that Ms Marri, who was kidnapped by the army personnel in 2005, had been “disappeared” and murdered by the security agencies in one of their torture cells. The news was absolutely shocking not only to the Baloch people and the human rights organizations but to all persons of conscience.

The following submissions may help to understand as to why the Pakistani army reacts to the Baloch people in such a brutal manner:

1. Since the forcible incorporation of Balochistan into Pakistan in 1948, the Baloch people have been resisting the political, economic and cultural domination of the Pakistani state through political mobilization and other peaceful means.

2. The Pakistani state, ruled by a military – bureaucratic elite for the past fifty years, has responded to the Baloch demand for national rights by resorting to ruthless exercise of its military prowess.
3. Since 1948, there have been four major military operations carried out by the Pakistani military in Balochistan in order to crush the resistance of the Baloch people against the subjugating measures of the Pakistani state.

4. During these military operations the Pakistani army and the various security agencies have committed massive violations of the basic human rights of the Baloch people.

5. As you are aware the Pakistani state embarked upon its latest military operations in 2001 to finally crush the Baloch people’s will to resist injustice. During this period the Pakistani military has bombarded the towns and villages of Balochistan killing and maiming thousands of innocent men, women and children. The military and police secret agencies have cracked down hard on various Baloch nationalist parties and organizations. Tens of hundreds of political activists have been detained without trial, some of them as long as 8 years while hundreds have been arrested and then “disappeared” and tortured. As a result of these ruthless operations about 100,000 ordinary people have been made homeless and forced to flee from their ancestral lands and take refuge in the neighboring provinces.

Your Excellency,

For the last so many years the abduction and humiliation, torture and extra-judicial killings of the Baloch political activists and prominent social and tribal figures have been closely observed and reported by various international human rights organizations including the Asian Human Rights Watch, Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, International Crisis Group and various other human rights and civil society organizations.

The Baloch Human Rights Council , therefore, requests the urgent intervention of Your Excellency as well as the United Nations Organization in order to stop the military operations in Balochistan. We urge the UN to set up an enquiry commission to investigate the killing and maiming of thousands of innocent men, women and children as a consequence of the brutal activities of the Pakistani military. The commission should also investigate the illegal detention and disappearance of tens of hundreds of ordinary people and the use of Baloch women detainees as sex slaves by the Pakistani army. We, therefore, appeal to Your Excellency to take swift action against the unlawful detention of Zarina Marri and others before the world suddenly learns from the Pakistani authorities that Zarina Marri and other detainees have committed suicide in their cells. To conclude, we urge the United Nations to bring all those responsible for such heinous outrages before the International Court of Justice and to be tried for their crimes against humanity.

With profound regards,

Dr. Habibullah Malik Samad Baloch
President of General Secretary of
Baloch Human Rights Council Baloch Human Rights Council

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