The human rights situation in Balochistan remains grave and of great concern. In April 2023, there were several incidents of enforced disappearances, extrajudicial killings, and military operations in Balochistan that have caused immense suffering to the local population. This report highlights the major human rights violations that occurred in Balochistan during the month of April 2023.
Press Conference by the Spokesperson of ISPR, the Media Wing of Pakistan Army
On April 25, 2023, General Ahmed Sharif Chaudhry, Director of Public Relations Department of Pakistan Army, held a press conference and admitted that Pakistan Army had conducted 4040 military operations in Balochistan in just three months. This admission is alarming as the Pakistani army has been operating in Balochistan continuously for the last two decades. The Pakistani army has turned Balochistan into a vast military camp, causing immense suffering to the local population.
Enforced Disappearances in Balochistan
During April 2023, 32 people were forcibly disappeared by the Pakistani Army in Balochistan. There were only 31 releases of people among thousands of forcibly disappeared persons, who were subjected to mental and physical torture during their imprisonment for years without any reason, and their charges have not been explained. Enforced disappearances have become a daily routine for the Pakistani Army in Balochistan. The local officials of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan and other organizations have not been playing a proactive role in stopping these enforced disappearances at the hands of the Pakistani army.
Extrajudicial Killing of Forcibly Disappeared Persons by Pakistani Army
For the past two decades, Balochistan has been undergoing mass punishment at the hands of Pakistani forces, including the brutal torture of top-ranked missing persons in detention centers followed by their brutal executions in fake encounters. In the month of April 2023, Pakistani forces conducted a ground and air operation in the rural and mountainous areas of Bolan and Mach of Balochistan. In the same operation, it was claimed that three persons who had previously been forcibly disappeared were killed in a fake encounter, whose bodies were found in central Balochistan. This extrajudicial killing is a violation of all human rights.
The actions of the Pakistani Army in Balochistan are in clear violation of several articles of the United Nations, including the right to a fair and public hearing, freedom of thought, conscience, religion, and expression. The actions of Pakistan Army in Balochistan clearly amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity. It is time for the international community and the United Nations to intervene and hold Pakistan accountable for its actions in Balochistan. The international community should take immediate action to protect the rights of the people of Balochistan and hold those responsible for these crimes accountable. We stand in solidarity with the people of Balochistan in their struggle for justice and human rights.