The Baloch of West London say that the human rights violations by the Pakistan army are worsening, especially along the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) route. Pakistan is a UN member state and a signatory of the UN Human Rights Charters, but has violated Baloch human rights since 1948. Yet the UN and other international humanitarian organisations, including the Red Cross, the UN Working Group on Enforced and Involuntary Disappearances and UNICEF remain silent. There are no foreign journalists in Balochistan.
Hyrbyair Marri, a Baloch leader who has got political asylum in Britain, has initiated the process to unite the three political factions of Balochistan, namely his own followers, the followers of Brahumdag Bugti in Switzerland and Allah Nizar Baloch in Balochistan, under one banner to intensify their freedom struggle. If an alliance can be built across these groups the independence movement will be more powerful and enable them to lobby European and American legislatures to bring awareness to the poverty and suffering of the Baloch at the behest of the Pakistan army. Hyrbyair intends to visit the US Congress after the US presidential elections as he continues his father, the nationalist leader Khair Bakhsh Marri’s vocation of sovereignty for Balochistan.
The fight of the Baloch got weakened when several political leaders were murdered and ISI infiltrated spies into the ranks of political and military groups. Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has talked to some pro-independence Baloch, however other activist groups see talking on less than freedom as a compromise and then begin demanding the release of all the “disappeared” which stalls the talks.
Pakistan Army chief, General Raheel Sharif has been touring Italy, UK, Saudi Arabia and other Middle Eastern countries drumming up support against Hizbut Tahrir (not proscribed in the UK but banned in Egypt, Germany, Russia and China) and Baloch separatist leaders operating from outside the country. It is unjustified to associate Baloch separatists with a radical, international, pan-Islamic political organisation. The Baloch consider Islam not as an identity or nationality, but as a belief. They are united not by religion but by culture, language and ethnicity. The Baloch have a national history of fighting against colonisation, first the Portuguese, next the British Empire and now Pakistan.
The Baloch hope that they have the support of Narendra Modi and Ashraf Ghani against Pakistan and its religious proxies in Balochistan. Hyrbyair has a message for Government of India: “We wish that India has a clear policy about Balochistan because Pakistan’s policies about Kashmir are clear and their interference in Kashmir not hidden from anyone. If Pakistani officials can openly meet the Kashmiri leadership then why shouldn’t India do the same? If Pakistan can speak at UN about Kashmir issue why shouldn’t India raise the issue of human rights violations in occupied Balochistan? As one of the biggest democracies of world and a power in South Asian region we expect India to diplomatically and morally support the Baloch freedom struggle.” When Hyrbyair talked to BBC Urdu in October 2015, he was asked if he would he ever visit India, he replied certainly he would if the Indian government officially invited him.
The Baloch know the ISI in Quetta funds the Taliban who occupy the Khyber area of Pakistan, and their leaders who remain in Balochistan—as evidenced by Mullah Mansour being killed by a US drone in Nushki whilst travelling from Taftan near the Iranian border to Quetta. The Nushki region is one of the most militarised zones in Balochistan because of the nuclear installments there.
The Baloch understand that Iran’s approach is cautious, as they may be fearful of a Kurdish separatist situation developing. The Baloch of UK suspect that Iran is claiming Baloch people as indigenously Iranian as part of a new nationalistic movement to avoid the potential concept of a united Baloch state.
The Baloch communicate below the radar, they understand Pakistan’s methodology of deception. The example given is that Indian naval consultant Kulbhushan Yadav, who was covertly captured in Chahabar in Iran and transferred to Balochistan for re-arrest.