In a tragic incident in Hoshaap, Balochistan, three young individuals from the same family who had been forcibly disappeared were killed by the Pakistan army. Their vehicle was subsequently destroyed by explosives. The police claimed that their deaths were caused by a roadside bomb blast. However, Balochistan's civil society, human rights organizations, and political leaders swiftly rejected this narrative, revealing that these youths were victims of enforced disappearance after being abducted by Pakistani forces in August of the previous year.
According to Gulzaar Dost, convener of Balochistan Civil Society, seven members of a family have been forcibly disappeared. Three of them were killed while in custody and four are still forcefully missing. It is important to note that all these individuals are close relatives.
The three individuals who lost their lives are Adil, son of Asa, Shah Jahan, son of Asa, and Nabi Dad, son of Lewari. Tragically, they were killed by the Pakistan Army with explosives in a car on the night between Saturday and Sunday.
In addition to the above-mentioned individuals, four other family members were forcibly disappeared. They include Shaukat, son of Lewari, Zaheer, son of Lashkaran, Peerjan, son of Lashkaran, and Ahmad Khan, son of Shugrullah. These four individuals were arrested in front of witnesses from various locations on the same day (22 August 2022).
‘The police are lying, the murdered youths were in custody-Gulzaar Dost’
In a recent video statement, Balochistan Civil Society’s convener and prominent human rights activist Gulzaar Dost strongly rejected the narrative put forth by the police.
He stated in his video message that the bodies of three young individuals were brought to the Hoshaap Levis police station the previous night. He emphasized that the police's account of the incident is entirely false and that they are providing misleading information at the behest of powerful institutions. He refuted the claim that the individuals were killed in an explosion, asserting that there is concrete evidence of their enforced disappearance.
Gulzaar Dost detailed that Adil forcibly disappeared from the chambers of Syed Majeed Shah Advocate, while his brother Shah Jahan was taken from Dost’s cousin's house. Nabi Dad was also forcibly disappeared after his arrest. He emphasized that the Turbat district police's claim about their deaths being caused by an IED blast is completely untrue, as they were missing persons who forcibly disappeared in August. He noted that the media and Kech Bar Association are witnesses to their extrajudicial arrest.
Expressing concern for the safety of the remaining four detained individuals, Shaukat, Zaheer, Peerjan, and Ahmad Khan, Gulzar Dost feared that they may also face extrajudicial killings.
‘International organizations should play a role in securing the people of Balochistan-Paank’
Human rights organization Paank has strongly condemned the recent incident in Balgatar, reaffirming that in its August report, Paank had documented the enforced disappearance of youths who were subsequently killed extrajudicially.
In a statement on Twitter, Paank emphasized that the long-standing policy of "kill and dump" in Balochistan is a grave human rights issue, raising serious concerns about the treatment of individuals by the state in the region.
Paank has called for urgent international attention and an independent investigation into the incident, highlighting the need to address and rectify this systematic abuse. The organization urged the international community to ensure accountability for those responsible for such incidents in Balochistan and to provide justice and security for the people of the region.
‘It is crucial for everyone to speak out against this inhumanity- Naseem Baloch’
Dr. Naseem Baloch, Chairman of the Baloch National Movement (BNM), emphasized the importance of speaking out against the tragedy in his statement regarding the incident in which three youths were killed after being kidnapped from Balgatar area of Balochistan. He condemned the inhuman treatment and called for everyone to raise their voices against it.
He also criticized the role of parliamentary parties, stating that the so-called Baloch parliamentarians are merely bystanders in this situation. As the Pakistani elections approach, they are focused on gaining votes while their superiors oppress the Baloch people. Dr. Naseem Baloch urged for the exposure of these individuals who masquerade as Baloch nationalists but are acting as oppressors.
‘Whenever the Pakistan army suffers a loss in any attack it drops the bodies of the forcibly disappeared persons - Qazi Rehan’
Qazi Dad Muhammad Rehan, the Information Secretary of the Baloch National Movement (BNM), has highlighted the Pakistan Army's long-standing tactic of orchestrating fake encounters for forcibly disappeared individuals in Balochistan. He stated that whenever the army faces losses in attacks by Baloch Sarmachars (Freedom Fighters), they stage fake encounters, kill the detainees, and present it as a victory. This tactic is used to deceive both their soldiers and the people of Pakistan.
Rehan emphasized that these fake encounters are designed to shift the blame for enforced disappearances onto Baloch individuals involved in the freedom struggle. The Pakistan Army uses these staged encounters as supposed evidence to dismiss the allegations made against them. He also pointed out the media blackout in Balochistan, which severely restricts the dissemination of information, making it easier for the army to manipulate the narrative.
He further highlighted that enforced disappearances are not limited to Balochistan but also occur in Sindh and Pakhtunkhwa. Rehan stressed that this issue goes beyond being specific to Balochistan; it is a crime against humanity that plagues humanity at large in the present time.
Rehan called for the international community to support the Baloch nation, with neighboring countries playing a crucial role. He stated that the silence and neutrality of neighboring countries only perpetuate these grave injustices. He also emphasized that the Baloch nation can only be liberated from the brutal army and occupying state by attaining freedom, as all other possibilities seem closed off.
‘ Forced Disappearances: Evidence Links Balgatar Youths to Retaliatory Incidents, Raising Concerns of Collective Punishment’
Sources, requesting anonymity, have disclosed to Radio Zrumbesh that the recently disappeared youths from Balgatar are believed to have become victims of collective punishment, connected to an incident on August 7th. A criminal named Khalid, son of Yaqoob Dung, reportedly orchestrated their arrest by Pakistan forces leading to their subsequent disappearance. Khalid, known for his involvement with the Pakistan army and affiliation with a death squad, has acknowledged his role, citing retaliation for a BLF operation that claimed the life of his brother, Ishaq.
Yaqoob Dung, notorious for his criminal background, had been supported and armed by the Pakistan army, fueling tensions with the Baloch nation. In response, the Balochistan Liberation Front targeted Dung and eleven associates in a 2011 attack, leading to Khalid and Ishaq assuming control of the death squad. Khalid Yaqub currently heads this notorious group, acting under the command of the Pakistan army.
On August 7th, in the Nali area of Balgatar, an attack using remote control resulted in the death of Ishaq, Yaqoob's son, and six others, according to an official statement from the BLF.
Reliable sources have verified that Khalid, son of Yaqoob, orchestrated the forced disappearances of seven youths as an act of collective punishment. Despite pleas from regional elders, he remained resolute, blaming these individuals for his brother's demise.
A police officer from Turbat confirmed Khalid Dung's responsibility for the enforced disappearances, stating that his gang lacks influence following the deaths of his father and brother. With assistance from military intelligence and Pakistani forces, Khalid identified those individuals who were subsequently disappeared by the army through extrajudicial means. Just as the BLF targeted his brother Ishaq in a landmine explosion, Khalid sought revenge against perceived enemies or BLF supporters.
The officer further disclosed that the police serve as a tool for the Pakistan army to erase evidence of their crimes. Under constant attack, the police find themselves in a defensive position. It is possible that the disappeared individuals were not escaping but were killed in a vehicle explosion caused by explosives. At present, the police have not provided an official statement regarding the cause of the explosion. However, local media reports, citing Levies sources, suggest that the vehicle was deliberately targeted by an explosive device, claiming the lives of three individuals.
Given the circumstances, concerns arise as four additional family members remain in the custody of the Pakistani army, raising fears of potential extrajudicial killings.