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Baloch Nationalism and its​ Regional and International Implications

Dr. Mohammad Hassan Hosseinbor, LL.B., MA, LL.M., Ph.D.

Balochistan: A Historical Perspective

Until the advent of British Colonialism and division of Balochistan in Mid- 19th century, Balochistan maintained its independence, for the most part, from the surrounding empires. This is reflected in the fact that the pre-division period is known by the Baloch as the Balochi Doura or the Balochi era, a historical concept used by the Baloch to refer to the state of affairs in Balochistan prior to its division and occupation by Iran and Pakistan. The Balochi Doura is characterized by Baloch political independence and the absence of foreign political and military rule in Balochistan. It is indeed remarkable that Balochistan preserved its independence against the constant threats of invasion from its powerful neighbors- namely the Indian Empire in the East, the Persian Empire in the North, and Arabia in the west- throughout this period. Without independence, the Baloch would not have been able to rule such a vast homeland stretching from the Strait of Hormuz to Karachi and from Baloch border lines with Persia and Afghanistan in the North to the Arabian Sea in the south. It was indeed the Baloch sovereignty over their homeland that enabled them to preserve and spread their language, culture, social norms and customs and to impose their political, economic, and military hegemony over a vast homeland named after them. 

Of course, there prevailed a feudal-tribal order in Balochistan during this period, as was the case throughout the then known world including the Middle East and South Asia during the Middle Age. Although divided into several independent feudal states, all were governed by a similar set of laws, traditions, a code of honor, and socio-political institutions prevalent throughout Balochistan. The feudal order was rooted in Makkuran where the settled population was engaged in agriculture in towns and villages or in trade in coastal regions, while the tribal system was mainly based in the scattered pasturelands of Northern Balochistan. Each fiefdom or principality was ruled by a feudal lord called Hakom, while each tribe was headed by a chieftain known as Sardar. Hakoms collected taxes from crops called Dah Yek (a tithe) to maintain the irrigation system and to administer law and order, while Sardars received one-tenth of animals owned by each tribesman to discharge both intra- and inter-tribal responsibilities. The Balochi tribes and fiefdoms were linked economically through trade and exchange of agricultural crops and animal products. They interacted socially, fought or cooperated politically, and united militarily whenever faced by a common external threat.

Simultaneous with the emergence of centralized kingdoms in European and Asian countries, the Balochi era also saw the emergence of two major tribal confederacies that united major Baloch principalities and tribes and incorporated all the Baloch territories under their central rules in the mid-15th century. The first was the Baloch Tribal Confederacy (approximately 1487-1511 A.D.) established by Mir Chakar Rind, stretching from Kirman in Iran in the west and Indus River in the East which constitute the boundaries of present day Balochistan. The second and the most powerful independent Baloch state during Balochi Doura was Khanate of Kalat established in 1666 A.D. that lasted for more than 300 years. The Baloch Doura survived the British colonial rule (1858-1947) because the British did not replace the Baloch political rule and institutions, but simply created its own parallel system of administration to control the defense and external affairs of an otherwise an independent Balochi state. 

Under the British Empire, the land was divided into three parts. The Goldsmid Line drawn in 1871 and demarcated in 1896 gave Western Balochistan to Persia, while retaining the larger eastern part for British India. The Durand Line, drawn also by the British in 1894, further divided Balochistan between the British India and Afghanistan, assigning to the latter a portion of Northern Balochistan. The eastern Balochistan was forcefully annexed by Pakistan in 1948. The Western Balochistan was invaded and incorporated into Iran by Reza Shah, the founder of Pahlavi Dynasty, in 1928. The smaller northern part remains part of Afghanistan.

The Baloch Doura came to an end with the military annexation of Eastern Balochistan into Pakistan in 1948, but the cohesive bases of modern Baloch nationalism are firmly rooted in this era. These include a common ancestral homeland named after them Balochistan, covering about 240,000 square miles with a coastline stretching nearly 1000 miles from the Strait of Hormuz to Karachi in Pakistan. They also share a common language called Balochi, have their distinct culture and socio-economic institutions and share a common history.

The Rise of Baloch Nationalism: the Quest for Self-Determination

The rise of Baloch nationalism is a direct response to the division and occupation of their homeland by Pakistan and Iran and their oppressive, exploitative, and discriminatory policies toward the Baloch. Therefore, the Baloch national movement is a true manifestation of the Baloch nation’s aspiration for self-determination and their quest for the establishment of a free, democratic, and progressive Baloch state where the rule of a duly elected parliament is supreme. It is a reflection of the Baloch’s determination to put an end to their current status of being divided, marginalized, oppressed, and reduced to second-class citizens in Iran and Pakistan. It is a national liberation movement against foreign domination, exploitation, and tyranny. To borrow from the US Declaration of Independence, it is necessary to spell out for the international community the causes which compel the Baloch to seek independence. As articulated in this pioneering historical document “When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bonds which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation”. 

The list of the Baloch grievances against the Pakistan and Iran requires compilation of several volumes which is beyond this short presentation. But it is crystal clear that the history of the Pakistani and Iranian rule over Balochistan has been a history of domination, discrimination, exploitation, brutality, and injustice against the Baloch. For the world to see, here are some of the facts and the causes driving the Baloch quest for self-determination:

-The division and forceful annexation of Balochistan into Iran and Pakistan against the Baloch will and consent.

– The refusal by both Iran and Pakistan to hold an internationally supervised referendum on the issue of self-determination as demanded by the Baloch. 

-The systematic plunder of Balochistan’s immense natural resources by Pakistan and Iran.  As a prime example of Punjabi economic exploitation is that Balochistan accounts for 30 percent of Pakistan’s total gas production, but receives and consumes only 17 percent of its own output. The remaining 83 percent goes mainly to Punjab. (1)

– In both Pakistan and Iran, Balochistan has the worst indicators for life expectancy, school enrollment, adult literacy, infant mortality, and access to drinking water and sanitation in both countries.

– Balochistan has been kept deliberately as the poorest, least developed, and the most neglected province by unjust policies pursued by successive governments in Pakistan and Iran against the Baloch. The essence of such deliberate policies was best underlined and confirmed by Mr. khalat-Bary, a former Director-General of CENTO (a Cold War Organization including Iran, Pakistan, and Turkey as its Members) and one of the last Shah’s Foreign Ministers. In an interview with Seliq Harrison in 1977, he bluntly stated that “In CENTO, we always assumed that the Baloch would attempt to create their own independent state someday, with Soviet support, so it was desirable to keep them as politically weak, disunited, and backward as possible.”(2) 

-The massive loss of life among civilians and destruction of their properties caused by brutal and continuing military operations by Pakistan and Iranian armies. 

– Thousands of Baloch civilians and activists currently held incommunicado by Pakistan military and intelligence services. That is also the case in Iran.

–  Forced disappearances of thousands of Baloch intellectuals and political activists.

-Internal displacements of an estimated 150,000 to 500,000 Baloch civilians due to the on-going military operations by the Pakistani Army in Balochistan.

 – The extrajudicial killings and forced disappearance of several thousand Baloch activists under what is known as the “kill and dump policy” pursued by the Pakistani intelligence service known as ISI and its affiliates. The precise number of enforced disappearances is not known and may never be disclosed by Pakistan. According to a report published by the Asian Human Rights Commission in January 31, 2012 and titled “Pakistan: the people of Balochistan have to bury the mutilated bodies of their loved ones almost every day of the week”, the extrajudicial killings of disappeared persons in Balochistan include 23 bullet riddled bodies found during the first month of 2013, 56 mutilated bodies during the last six months, and 271 bodies since July 2010.(3) The PPP-led government under president Zardari acknowledged a list of 1,102 enforced disappearance from Balochistan. The Pakistan Human Rights Commission of Pakistan cited evidence of 600 disappearances in Balochistan, but not an estimate of total numbers ( Selig S. Harrison, Pakistan: The state of the Union, A Special Report, Center for International Policy, 2009, P.8). But an authoritative report released by Amnesty International in July 2008 clearly shows that the Pakistani government has engaged in large-scale “enforced disappearances” against “activists pushing for greater regional ethnic and regional right, and greater access to provincial resources” in Balochistan and Sindh. The report adds that the Baloch and Sindhi activist were “arbitrarily detained, denied access to lawyers, families and courts and held in undeclared places of detention run by Pakistan’s intelligence agencies, with government concealing their fate or whereabouts”. (4)

The Baloch sources, however, put the number of extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances much higher than that reported in media. A report published in or around 2010 by the Voice for Baloch Missing Persons, formed by the aggrieved families of the missing Baloch, blamed Pakistan’s ISI and MI (Military Intelligence) for extrajudicial killing and disappearance of “more than 4000 Baloch political activists since 2001”. (5)

– The state policies aimed at changing Balochistan demography by flooding the land with settlers from Punjab and Persia in the hope of reducing Baloch majority to a minority in their own homeland, an ever growing threat to Baloch national identity, language, culture, and way of life. 

-Testing by Pakistan of nuclear weapons, contaminating the soil and air, destroying the environment, and endangering the life and livelihood of Baloch people.

-Confiscation and misappropriation of Baloch lands and properties in Gwadar, Chahbahar, and others areas to build cantonment and colonies for military personnel and settlers in both Pakistan and Iran.

-Awarding mining concessions, Gwadar port operation, Gwadar naval base, and a land corridor to China by Pakistan against the wish of the Baloch people.

-Building Iran-Pakistan pipeline on Balochi land without the consent of its rightful owners.

– Mass executions of the Baloch political prisoners and systematic and wide spread discrimination against the Baloch by Iranian governments as described in Appendix A. 

As a result,   the Baloch have never accepted nor recognized the Goldsmid Line dividing the Baloch between Iran and Pakistan nor the Durand Line separating northern Balochistan. They have struggled relentlessly to regain their lost freedom and to reassert the Baloch sovereignty over their homeland Balochistan. This is evidenced by several major insurrections by the Baloch against Pakistan in 1948, 1958, 1962, 1973, and the current insurgency which has been growing in strength and gaining momentum by day since its eruption in 2005. Similarly, there have been continuing uprising among the Baloch against Iran ever since its forceful annexation of Western Balochistan in 1928, including the tribal revolts in Sarhad in 1930s and 1940s, Mir Dadshah revolt in 1950s, the insurrection by the Baloch Liberation Front in the 1960 and 1970s, and the ongoing confrontation between the Baloch nationalists and the clerical regime in Iran. 

The Baloch national struggle is certain to intensify as it is gaining momentum internally and internationally. Since the eruption of the current insurgency, the movement is spreading fast and wide inside Balochistan. It has evolved into a mass movement encompassing all strata and classes in Baloch society as shown by the growing number of Baloch women and youth joining the struggle. The ranks of Baloch Sarmachars are swelling by day. 

Externally and due to the tremendous sacrifices made by the Baloch inside Balochistan and the relentless campaign of Baloch activists in Diaspora, the Baloch quest for self-determination has been widely publicized internationally and the great powers are certain to take notice of the developments in Balochistan. The international media has seen a much wider coverage of events in Balochistan than ever before. Similarly, the human rights violations in Balochistan are documented and reported more frequently by international human rights organizations. The plight of the Baloch and Balochistan is receiving greater exposure in international arena and in the halls of Western governments, international organizations, NGOs, and academia. However, to be effective, it is incumbent upon the Baloch leadership and activists in diaspora to intensify and coordinate their international campaign.

The Balochistan Hearings held by the United States Congress in February 2012 was a success of historical proportion in publicizing and internationalizing the Baloch cause. Equally important is the Resolution pending in the US Congress recognizing the right of Baloch nation to self-determination. An intensive and coordinated lobbying effort by the Baloch nationalists is a must to persuade the US congress to approve this Resolution. If approved, the Resolution carries a great moral and political weight in promoting the Baloch cause in the US and would set a precedent for other Western powers to follow. It requires a collective and coordinated effort by all segments of Baloch leadership and activists to build on this historical momentum. 

The Prospects for Statehood: Opportunities and Challenges

The prospects for independence have never been brighter than today and statehood may well be on its way.  But to establish a free and an independent Balochistan, the Baloch national movement has to win the war at home and has to secure international recognition. The real war, however, is the one waged for the hearts and minds of the Baloch nation. Winning this war will guarantee victory on both fronts. One or two tactical victory in the battlefield may help, but will not be decisive. Similarly, one or more tactical defeat or retreat does not end the Baloch thirst for independence. 

The Baloch national movement possesses the requisite ideological foundation, organizational base, and popular support to succeed. Ideologically, its message has been crystalized into a clear demand for self-determination, a popular message resonating among the Baloch masses and firmly established under international law. Organizationally, the movement has manifested itself into well-established and deep-rooted national parties and organizations in Eastern Balochistan. They are well-known and numerous. The movement also enjoys broad popular support among all classes and strata of Baloch society throughout Balochistan. 

Opportunities: Momentum Internally and Internationally

As is the case with all national movements, the Baloch nationalists have to rely on their strength and capitalize on opportunities, whether real or perceived, tangible or intangible,  in their path at any given time, but also have to be able to overcome the formidable hurdles and challenges that inevitably they have to face. At this juncture of the Baloch struggle, there are several major factors that are strengthening and accelerating the Baloch’s quest for self-determination. 

First, there is a firm conviction among the Baloch nationalists that their cause is just and that the Baloch nation has every right under international law and the UN Charter to seek and exercise its right to self- determination and to rid itself of foreign domination, exploitation, and tyranny. It is fueled by Baloch grievances and the injustices perpetrated against them in Pakistan and Iran as outlined earlier.  

The second major factor is the momentum gained by the Baloch internally and internationally and the belief that it is unstoppable and statehood is inevitable. This is a reflection of the growing popularity and the widening base of the Baloch national movement at home and the increased international attention it has attracted. There is a strong feeling among Baloch that the prospects for independence have never been brighter than today and that an emerging Baloch state is well on its way to become a reality sooner or later. This belief has gained in popularity and is widely accepted particularly after the historical Hearings on Balochistan held by the United States Congress in February 2012. This sentiment is well captured by a young Baloch woman in a note to her father on July 20 of 2013. In her words, “It is a very exciting and crucial time in the Baloch struggle as we have gained an unstoppable momentum. There is no doubt that history is on our side and a newly formed independent Baloch Republic is in the making as I write these very words!”   

Third, in spite of Pakistan Army’s overwhelming military force, the Baloch insurgents have gained in strength and momentum and have held their ground. They may not be able to defeat the well-armed and well-disciplined Pakistani army, but they can bleed the army and drain Pakistan’s scarce resources in a prolonged guerrilla war. Such a pro-longed conflict could also pave the way for foreign intervention that may lead to the independence of Balochistan as happened with the separation of Bangladesh in the aftermath of Indo-Pakistani war in 1971. 

Fourth, the brutality with which the Pakistani army has conducted its operations in Balochistan in the present as well as previous wars has alienated the Baloch population to the point of no return, thus creating a fertile ground for insurgents to operate and to expand.

Fifth, there is truly a tangible national awakening among the Baloch about their sense of nationhood and national identity that helps motivate and mobilize the Baloch masses to rally behind the flag of struggle for national liberation. As a proud nation, the Baloch look back with nostalgia at their history prior to 1948 when they enjoyed independence for centuries.

Finally, and crucially, Balochistan’s geo-strategic importance and its rich natural resources presents the Baloch nationalists with a winning card in dealing with the great powers as will be discussed below.  

The Hurdles and Challenges: Lack of Unity

There are several major challenges facing the Baloch nationalists at this time. It is imperative to overcome these challenges to succeed. The first and foremost is the lack of unity among nationalist parties and organization. A highly fractured movement is also highly vulnerable and becomes a much easier target to suppress. The governments of Pakistan and Iran have employed the policy of divide and rule very effectively to plant the seeds of discords and to create frictions among various Baloch factions, political parties, tribes, and the leading personalities. Their preferred method is to divide the Baloch nationalists, co-opt those vulnerable, and eliminate those committed to the cause of statehood as shown by the extrajudicial killings and the kill and dump policy practiced by Pakistan’s ISI and affiliates. 

The second major hurdle is that the Baloch nationalists have to contend with two highly repressive and undemocratic governments in Pakistan and Iran, which have always relied on brutal military force to suppress the Baloch. These governments vehemently oppose any and all democratic and peaceful solutions. Otherwise, the issue of self-determination can be peacefully resolved by holding a referendum under UN supervision as demanded by the Baloch. A prime example is the agreement between the UK and Scotland to hold such a referendum so that the question of independence is decided freely by the people of Scotland. That was also the case with the referendum held in Sudan that led to the independence of Southern Sudan recently.

The third major challenge is gaining international recognition. This problem can be addressed through intense lobbying and public relation campaign particularly in the capitals of major powers. Success internationally requires that the Baloch nationalists speak with one voice and with a clear message that is self-determination through an internationally sponsored referendum. They have to assure the world powers that an emerging Baloch state will be stable, peaceful, democratic, and viable. 

The Geostrategic Importance of Balochistan: the New Great Game

Balochistan lost its independence during the nineteenth-century Anglo-Russian rivalry referred to by historians as the “Great Game”. This great power competition brought Balochistan under the hegemony of Britain as her forward base to prevent Russian advances towards the British India and the warm waters of the Indian Ocean and the Persian Gulf. Due to the tribal and feudal structure of the Baloch Society and the weakness of Kalat state at the time, Baloch were in no position to play the game or take advantage of the Anglo-Russian competition. The division of Balochistan is another legacy of the Great Game that left the Baloch at the mercy of Britain’s client states namely Pakistan and Iran.

Today, there is a New Great Game played out in South Asia by new great powers namely the US, China, and India. The dynamics of the New Game are the same as before: projection of power, competition for resources, search for spheres of influence, and securing their interests. Once again, Balochistan is certainly one of the focal points in this rivalry for the same main reason that attracted the great powers to Balochistan in the 19th century: the geostrategic importance of Balochistan. It can be said with confidence that Balochistan is the most strategic piece of land in the world for the reasons described below. 

The fundamental question is whether or not the Baloch nationalists are ready to use the tremendous strategic assets at their disposal to regain their lost sovereignty under the new Great Game. Or at least have their voice heard. The answer is definitely yes provided that that the Baloch nationalists are able to form a united and cohesive movement capable of mass mobilization of men and materials in support of their demands. Only then, they can speak with one voice and one message to assure the great powers that the Baloch are ready to govern themselves effectively, that a Baloch state would be a force for peace and stability in the region, and that it will not threaten their interests.

Due to Balochistan’s geopolitical significance, the Baloch have an array of strategic assets to influence the great powers to back the demand for statehood. They include:

– First, Located directly on the entrance to the Strait of Hormuz on a coastline stretching nearly 1000 miles to Karachi, Balochistan occupies a strategic position with a commanding view of the shipping lines carrying 40 percent of world oil supplies. The world economy depends on these supplies and securing the shipping lines from the Persian Gulf along the Balochistan coast is of vital strategic importance to the US and all other oil-importing countries. If played subtly, this can serve as a winning leverage in promoting the Baloch cause with the great powers.

-Secondly, Balochistan connects the Middle East, Central Asia, and South Asia via sea, land, and air and can serve as a major hub for trade, energy, transportation, and communication links between and among the countries of these regions. 

-Third, Balochistan holds large reserves of natural resources including silver, uranium, aluminum, oil, gas, gold, copper, and platinum. As we know, the competition for natural resources is intensifying among the major economic and military powers, another crucial leverage for Baloch in dealing with great powers. 

-Fourth, Balochistan is the closest access point to the Arabian Sea and Indian Ocean for land-locked Afghanistan and energy rich Central Asian countries to gain access to international markets for their energy exports. An independent Balochistan can serve as the most economic route for oil and gas pipelines and rail ways linking these countries to the Arabian Sea. 

– Fifth, should Balochistan become independent, it would have jurisdiction and ownership of the sea and seabed resources along its coast for two hundred miles under the provisions of the Law of the Sea. The energy resources in Balochistan coastal seabed are estimated to be the largest in the world as reported by a recent survey by the Iranian government.

In addition to the above assets, the Baloch nationalists should also advance their cause by capitalizing on the opportunities created by the great power rivalries in the region. A prime example is the intensifying naval rivalry in the Indian Ocean between the US and China and between India and China, three of the main players in the new Great Game. After all, this competition is bond to inject Balochistan into their strategic calculations as is the case with Gwadar and Chahbahar. The US and India are certain to safeguard their strategic interests by countering the Chinese moves. This creates an opening for the Baloch, who were never asked nor ever consented to the Chinese involvement in Gwadar, to put the issue of statehood on the agenda of the great powers and to try to enlist their sympathy and support for their cause. Similarly, the indo-china rivalry in the Indian Ocean, Afghanistan, and Central Asia, China’s alliance with and support of Pakistan, Indo-China border disputes, and their never-ending thirst for natural resources are factors favoring and factoring the Baloch in the ever growing competition in Asia and the Indian Ocean. 

Similarly, the US-China rivalry and the US-Iran conflict have a direct bearing on Balochistan and could open the door for a greater understanding of the Baloch cause by the US and its Western allies. Certainly, the Baloch nationalists can make the case that the Baloch’s interests coincide with those of the U.S. at this juncture of history for several reasons. First, the Baloch are opposed to the growing Chinese involvement in Balochistan’s Gwadar port, China’s mining concessions, and the land corridor to China’s western border. Any Chinese naval base in Gwadar could also threaten the free flow of oil through the Strait of Hormuz and poses a strategic challenge to the U.S. interest in the region. That is also the case with the plans for linking China to Gwadar via an overland route.

Second, the Baloch share the US concerns for free flow of oil and regional stability. The Baloch conflict with Pakistan and Iran has the potential to spread to neighboring countries including the Gulf States and to destabilize the whole region. Therefore, it is in the interest of the US as the only super power to assist in finding a durable and peaceful solution to this conflict. And the Baloch self-determination is the only logical long-term solution. Third, the Baloch oppose the gas pipeline project for carrying Iranian gas to Pakistan and are ready to stop it. This is in accord with the U.S. economic sanctions imposed on Iran. Fourth, the Baloch are also against the growing Iranian hegemony in the region and its interference in Afghanistan and the Gulf states as is the US. If asked, the Baloch are ready to assist the US and its Western allies in containing and countering the Iranian threat. Fifth, given their secular outlook and ideology, the Baloch nationalists and political parties have acted as a major barrier to the Talibanization of Balochistan, thus incurring the wrath of Pakistani and Iranian military and intelligence services.   

Finally, Balochistan and Pashtun areas of Pakistan are used by the Pakistani military and intelligence services to shelter and support Afghan Taliban and other jihadist groups in their continuing attacks against American, NATO, and Afghan forces in Afghanistan. Pakistan uses the Talibans to reassert its control and influence over Afghanistan as its sphere of influence against India. To counter the Pakistan-Taliban alliance, it may become necessary at some point for the U.S. and Afghan government to support Baloch and Pashtun nationalists who espouse secular values. Both Baloch and Afghans have rejected the Durand Line and have cooperated in the past in their campaign for greater Balochistan and an independent Pashtunistan. An alliance of Baloch, Sindhi and Pashtun nationalist supported by the U.S. can serve as a counter weight to Iranian and Pakistani support for Taliban as U.S. prepares for withdrawal from Afghanistan.

 Conclusion

The prospects for an emerging Baloch state appear more promising than ever before. It is within reach. But the key to success is unity in rank and file among the Baloch nationalists. A unified national liberation movement is the main prerequisite for achieving the goal of statehood. Therefore, it is imperative for the Baloch nationalists to set aside their differences and to unite behind the main objective that is self-determination. This will allow for mass mobilization and for access to their combined resources in order to intensify the struggle at this historical juncture that the Baloch movement is gaining ground and momentum internally and internationally. 

Therefore, I recommend a broad coalition whereby all nationalist parties and organizations can rally and join forces around four crucial points, while retaining their organizational and ideological independence. To a great extent, there is already a general understanding and acceptance of these points among the nationalists. The points of agreement are as follows:

-The first is to agree on the ultimate goal that is self-determination. 

-The second point of agreement is the demand for an internationally supervised referendum whereby the Baloch nation can freely exercise its right to self-determination and statehood. The demand for such a referendum is certain to strengthen the movement internally and to ensure the international legitimacy and recognition for the Baloch cause. 

-The third point accepted by all nationalists is that any future government should be elected through free and fair elections and unhindered participation of all citizens and political parties and is based on the supremacy of parliament. 

– Fourth, all nationalist should also agree that  upon attainment of statehood(1) a  constitution would be drafted by a an elected Constituent Assembly for approval by a general referendum and the future constitution would enshrine the rights and principles universally recognized including: the right to choose their own form of government, free and fair elections, equality under the law for all citizens- regardless of gender, race, color, or religion- freedom of speech, freedom of opinion, freedom of association, freedom of religion, and protection of minorities.

Unity is the demand of the Baloch nation. It is the requirement of our times. It is the key to attaining self-determination and joining the community of nations. We should demand it from our leaders and political parties. They should answer our call and unite. Otherwise, the Baloch nation and our history will not judge them kindly. 

SOURCES

  1. Selig S. Harrison, Pakistan: The state of the Union, A Special Report, Center for International Policy, 2009, P.21.
  2. Selig S. Harrison, In Afghanistan’s Shadow: Baloch Nationalism and Soviet Temptations, New York, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 1981, P. 159.
  3. Source: http://www.humanrights.asia/news/ahrc-news/AHRC-STM-021-2012.
  4. Amnesty International, Denying the Undeniable: Enforced Disappearances in Pakistan, July 2008.
  5. Voice for Baloch Missing Persons, Disappearances: Pakistan’s Kill and Dump Policy, Understanding Pakistan’s Dirty War Against Baloch People, Quetta, Pakistan, Undated, P. 24.
  6. Source: http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2013\07\21\story_21-7-2013_pg3_2.

Dr M. Hosseinbor is a Washington D.C. lawyer who facilitates trade, joint ventures, investments and project developments between American corporations and their counterparts from the Gulf countries. He also is the author of, ” Iran and its Nationalities: the case of Baluch nationalism”.Dr Hosseinbor previously served as Energy and Economic advisor to the embassy of the state of Qatar in Washington D.C from 1982 to 1998. He previously served as an adjunct professor of law at the Catholic University of America. He has written extensively on various issues relating to the Middle East, including a treatise on Iran and its nationalities.

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