Balochs take to UK streets against Pakistan

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Nearly two dozen activists held placards and banners denouncing the Pakistan government’s policies towards the Baloch people and other minorities….reports RAHUL KUMAR

The Free Balochistan Movement (FBM) organised a protest at UK’s iconic Trafalgar Square, slamming Chinese activities and gross human rights violations by Pakistan in the province.

The FBM is a political group canvassing for an independent Baloch nation, separate from Pakistan and its militant politics. Jamal Nasir Baloch, head of foreign affairs of FBM told India Narrative: “Today’s protest was organised after a gap of many months due to covid restrictions”.

Nearly two dozen activists held placards and banners denouncing the Pakistan government’s policies towards the Baloch people and other minorities. They also condemned China for its resource exploitation in Balochistan in connivance with the Pakistan government.

The protestors held placards saying, “CPEC (China Pakistan Economic Corridor) is death and destruction for Balochistan”, “We condemn Pakistani military”, “Stop Baloch genocide” and also “Balochistan is not Pakistan”. They waved the red, green and blue flags of the Baloch national struggle.

The protest was held on an exceptionally sunny weekend in a country which was recently battered by one of its fiercest storms in many decades. The Trafalgar Square was brimming with tourists, many of whom stopped to ask the protestors about Balochistan and their protest.

Baloch said that the Trafalgar Square was one of the best places to create awareness among people. “It was a successful protest as many British people have promised to talk about our issues with their elected representatives.”

Shahzavar Karimzadi, professor in economics at the Hertfordshire University and an ethnic Baloch from Iran said: “This protest is to highlight the human rights violations taking place in Balochistan by the Punjabi Muslim establishment since 1948. The Baloch people are being persecuted everyday”.

Regarding the protests against China, Karimzadi said that CPEC has brought more militarism to Balochistan. “Pakistan is using Chinese finance to exploit our resources. You will not believe it but more Baloch have been killed and forcibly disappeared after the CPEC was implemented by the two countries.”

One of the organisers, Faiz Mohammed Baloch, Treasure of the FBM, told India Narrative, that the protest has been called to highlight the military operation being carried out by the Pakistani army against Baloch students being arrested from parts of Balochistan as well as Pakistan’s Punjab. “The students have been threatened and are being asked not to speak with their relatives settled abroad”.

In a statement, the FBM said: “We the Baloch diaspora, and members of the FBM, urge the British public and other European nations to urge their government to stop all economic, financial, diplomatic and military support to Pakistan and pressure their government to ask Pakistan to stop the crimes against humanity in occupied Balochistan.”

(The content is being carried under an arrangement with indianarrative.com)

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