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ATTORNEY URGENT  ALERT

 

PAKISTAN:

 

April 9, 2009

 

Kachkol Ali, 

 

 lawyer in Turbat city , 

in life danger,

after he witnessed the abduction of three clients, shortly before they were found murdered in Balochistan province.  

Source    ACHR .

 

 

 

 

Kachkol Ali,  Balochi lawyer,  is in danger, after he witnessed the abduction of three clients, shortly before they were found murdered in Balochistan province.

 

On April 3rd, his clients and old political friends leaders of Balochistan National Movement (BNM) - Mr. Ghulam Mohammad, 45, Chairman of the Baloch National Movement, Mr. Sher Mohammad Baloch, 35, Vice President of Balochistan Republican Party and Mr. Lala Munir Baloch, 50, General Secretary of Baloch National Front  –  had been taken into official custody in a dramatic move by the government functionaries soon after ransacking Kachkol’s office and asking them all to put their hands up. Kachkol Ali Baloch, Balochistan’s former leader of the opposition and a High Court lawyer, saw it under his nose how three of his clients were whisked away by plain clothes persons in mysterious vehicles that bore no registration plates, he now describes as the personnel of the intelligence agencies

 They were taken from the chambers of the  prominent lawyer and their deaths have raised several questions on the role of state spy agencies, particularly about military intelligence (MI). All three murdered persons were earlier kidnapped by the military intelligence agencies during 2006 and 2007 and each of them were disappeared for several months. After their release it was found that they were kept in the different military torture cells and severely tortured. They all were interrogated by the military officers about the Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) and funding for nationalist movements in the province against military operations.

According to those dealing with the case, Ghulam Mohammad Baloch, Sher Mohammad Baloch and Lala Muneer Jan Baloch, had attended a Session Court in Turbat district, Balochistan province on 3 April to arrange interim bail, relating to charges in shooting and bomblast cases last year. After being granted bail the men were accompanied by their lawyer, Mr. Kachkol Ali to his chamber at around noon. Ali is a former opposition leader in the Balochistan assembly. According to the lawyer, more than a dozen persons in civilian dress then entered the office, ransacked it and abducted the men, driving away in four vehicles which bore no registration numbers. The attackers refused to identify themselves, or to tell Ali where his clients were being taken.

Kachkol Ali  immediately filed an application at the Turbat Police Station accusing military intelligence (M.I.) and Inter services Intelligence (I.S.I) persons of the abduction. The application mentioned his fear that the men would be tortured and killed by the military. However police refused to file a first information report (FIR), the basic document for police investigation; they said that they would consult their superiors in the police force.

Kachkol Ali then filed an application of Habeas Corpus for the three activists under section 491 CRPC. However the Judge of the Turbat session court, Mr. Pazeer Ahmed Baloch, refused to accept it, claiming it did not come under his jurisdiction, and told them to file in the Balochistan High Court. The lawyers, which included Mr. Fida Hussain, the president of Turbat Bar Association, then sent an application for sou moto action to Mr Iftekhar Choudhry, the chief justice of Pakistan’s Supreme Court. According to sources, Chief Justice Balochistan Sanaullah Yaseen of the Balochistan High Court has just taken the case, suo moto.

The three Baloch nationalist leaders were killed after their abduction .The  three men’s bodies were found five days later on 8 April in Pidrak, 35 km from the place of arrest. They were almost unrecognizable due to the chemically-aided decomposition, but medical officers have concluded that the men were killed on the day of their arrest, and possibly thrown from a high place, such as a helicopter. Civilians in Balochistan have tried to protest again the murders and are reportedly being pressured to stay inside by law enforcement agencies. Some gun shots and blasts have been reported.

Local media reports say that state agents are now on the hunt for Mr. Kachkol Ali. His homes in Quetta and Panjgore city are under surveillance and his legal offices in Turbat city have been cordoned off by plain-clothed persons. He is currently in hiding. His fears are based on the fact that – as reported previously by the AHRC – a number of Balochistan men have disappeared after witnessing intelligence agents in action.

 

The lawyer had already reported that he believed Military Intelligence (MI) agents were to blame for the abduction of the three activists, and that he saw two unmarked vehicles belonging to the Frontier Core (FC), a Paramilitary force, following the cards that took away the three men.

 

BACKGROUND INFORMATION:

Para military forces are currently deployed in every Baloch city, where they are curbing the freedoms of citizens, including women and children, who are trying to protest the murder of the activists. According to eyewitness reports, one female protestor has been baton-charged by police and FC members, and a number of women have been arrested in the city of Tump, where the police station was just burned down. It is quite clear that the illegal and often lethal acts by state agencies in Balochistan – and the impunity they enjoy – will only serve to further deteriorate the situation in the province.

The Pakistan military has been conducting operations in Balochistan province since 2001, where a strong movement seeking greater autonomy has taken root. Many Balochis feel that they are not adequately represented in the country’s political centres, that they receive little financial support and that their rights are consistently violated. Around 3,000 people are estimated to have died in military and paramilitary operations and ‘disappearances’ and many others remain missing.

 

PLEASE ACT NOW.

PLEASE CALL

 for Mr. Kachkol Ali to be offered necessary protection, and for his evidence against those in the military to be heard. Those acting on behalf of the state should do so in full uniform. A dialogue must also be revived with Baloch leaders and their parties, and legal and restrained governance demonstrated by those in power. The answer to this crisis will not be found in state-sponsored murder and the general oppression of civil society.



SUGGESTED ACTION:

Please write to the persons listed below to call for a thorough, speedy investigation into the abduction and murder of these three men, and the lapses in the complaint-receiving mechanism in Turbat police station that hampered their rescue. A public investigation should be launched into the illegal activities of military and paramilitary forces in the area.

PLEASE SEND YOUR LETTERS TO:

1. Mr. Asif Ali Zardari
President
President's Secretariat, Islamabad
PAKISTAN
Fax: + 92 51 922 1422, 4768/ 920 1893 or 1835
E-mail: (please see and post your appeal in the website - http://www.presidentofpakistan.gov.pk/WTPresidentMessage.aspx)

2. Mr. Syed Yousaf Raza Gillani
Prime minister of Pakistan
Prime Minister House, Islamabad
PAKISTAN
Fax: + 92 51 9221596
E-mail: webmaster@infopak.gov.pk

3. Federal Minister of Law
Justice and Human Rights
S Block, Pakistan Secretariat, Islamabad
PAKISTAN
Fax: +92 51 920 2628
E-mail: minister@molaw.gov.pk

4. Nawab Aslam Raisani
Chief Minister of Balochistan
Chief Minister House, Quette,
PAKISTAN
Fax: +92 81 920 2240
Tel: +92 81 449582 / 440661
E-mail: mirlashkari@yahoo.com

5. Nawab Zulfiqar Magsi
Governor of Balochistan
Governor House Balochistan,
Quetta- Balochistan province,
PAKISTAN
Fax: +92 81 920 2992

6. Chief Secretary
Government of Balochistan
Quetta, Balochistan province
PAKISTAN
Fax: +92 81 9202132


THANK YOU.

 

 

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