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  • Red flow

    [[IMAGE: The flow of blood never seems to cease in Balochistan.]]
    The flow of blood never seems to cease in Balochistan. Within some 24 hours, multiple incidents have highlighted the scale of violence in the province and once more brought forward the fact that the situation is out of control. The body of a nationalist leader, Sangat Sana of the Balochistan Republican Army, was found dumped at Murgat in the Turbat district, 30 bullets pumped through his chest. Sana had been missing since 2008; his father is among those protesting the missing people of Balochistan outside the Karachi Press Club. This was not the only instance of violent death. In Dera Murad Jamali, two children were killed when a police check-post was attacked by bombers. In Turbat seven labourers from Sindh and Waziristan were gunned down by nationalists who stated they objected to their work on oil and gas installations. Their ethnicity may, of course, have been a factor too, while in Naseerabad a member of the security forces was shot dead by unknown assailants — though it is not hard to imagine who these might have been. The violence seems to be accelerating rapidly, with the situation quite clearly lying beyond the control of the government.
    The attention of the world has indeed been directed towards Balochistan. The US House Committee on Foreign Affairs, after hearing alarming testimony from a host of representatives of human rights monitoring bodies has declared the province a ‘troubled’ area. Amnesty International has demanded a cut-off of military aid and in an unusual interview for a diplomat, the US envoy to Pakistan Cameron Munter, in an interview to the BBC has expressed concern over the situation in Balochistan. The voices of the Baloch have, of course, been ignored for years. It is now to be seen if international pressure can play a part in stemming the string of atrocities that have torn the province apart and created a state of affairs that grows grimmer by the day as the toll of misery and death continues to rise.
    Published in The Express Tribune, February 16th, 2012.