Battling Taliban No Excuse for Complicity in Abusive Counter-terrorism Practices
(New York, January 21, 2010) – Pakistan’s military actively undermined the civilian government’s human rights agenda in 2009, Human Rights Watch said today in its new World Report 2010.
The 612-page report, the organization’s 20th annual review of human rights practices around the globe, summarizes major human rights trends in more than 90 nations and territories worldwide.
The report says that Pakistan’s military publicly and privately resisted the government’s reconciliation efforts in the troubled province of Balochistan and attempts to locate people “disappeared” there during General Pervez Musharraf’s military rule. The military also opposed the international community’s attempts to end military intervention in the political and judicial processes through aid conditions.
“The Pakistani military continues to subvert the political and judicial systems in Pakistan,” said Ali Dayan Hasan, senior South Asia researcher at Human Rights Watch. “After eight years of disastrous military rule and in spite of the election of a civilian government, the army appears determined to continue calling the shots in order to ensure that it can continue to perpetrate abuses with impunity.” Continue reading
Filed under Al Qaeda, Army, baluchistan, human rights, Kerry Lugar Bill, Obama, Taliban, Terrorism, USA, violence, war, War On Terror
Islamabad: The government on Tuesday presented the Aghaaz-e-Huqook Balochistan to a joint sitting of parliament.
The landmark package contains several initiatives to address the problems of the Baloch people and bring them into mainstream.
Following is the text of the Aghaaz-e-Huqook package presented by Senator Raza Rabbani.
“Conscious, that the provinces have a sense of deprivation, in political and economic structures of the federation;
Recalling, that the provisions of the 1973 constitution in particular relating to the federation-province relationship have been circumvented;
Musharraf lets loose in Baltimore.
By Michael Schaffer, The New Republic
Some simple rules of thumb for the foreign ex-dictator out to make a mint on the U.S. lecture circuit: Get yourself included in a speakers’ series that features non-controversial names like Laura Bush and Jean-Michel Cousteau. Promise your “august audience” a “frank exchange.” Maybe drop the names of one or two revered American leaders who are your close friends. And perhaps it is best not to admit that you wish you still had the power to “sort out” an impolite member of the audience. Continue reading
By Pepe Escobar
Fasten your seat belts; it’s gonna be a bumpy ride. As a crucial subplot of the New Great Game in Eurasia, Balochistan – on both sides of the Iran-Pakistan border – promises turbulence aplenty. Welcome to United States General Stanley McChrystal’s self-fulfillment prophecy – “Chaos-istan” in action. Continue reading
As an oddly smiling President Zardari of Pakistan stood behind a visibly concerned President Obama in the White House this week, one had to wonder what Mr. Zardari was smiling about. Seven thousand miles away, in the country over which he presides, the economy has tanked, the province of Baluchistan is in the grips of a secessionist movement, Karachi is embroiled in ethnic violence between Pashtuns and Urdu speakers, and that’s not even the most pressing problem this nation of 170 million people is facing. As I write this, tens of thousands of refugees are pouring out of the Swat valley in anticipation of a major military offensive by the Pakistani Army against the Taliban.
For weeks, headlines around the world have raised alarm about the proximity of the Taliban to the capital Islamabad, and analysts have puzzled over the curious detachment with which the civilian government and the Pakistani Army seemed to be observing the situation deteriorate. Now that the Pakistani army is finally engaging the Taliban, there is one question on everyone’s mind: Is Pakistan serious about this fight this time, or will it cut a deal with the militants, as it has done in the past with disastrous consequences? Continue reading
Asif Salahuddin has sent this exclusive contribution for the Pak Tea House. The views expressed here are those of the author’s and we welcome debate on this argument. RR
‘Khilafah is the only solution for Pakistan’
Pakistan today finds itself very much at the centre of the world’s headlines, unfortunately though for almost entirely the wrong reasons. Just in the last few weeks alone we have witnessed an unprecedented level of turmoil in the country – the outrageous attacks on the police academy outside Lahore and on the Sri Lankan cricket team inside the city, the political theatrics of rule in Punjab, the Long March episode followed by the subsequent reappointment of the Chief Justice and the continued violation of sovereignty and killings via US drone attacks – indeed Pakistan as a nation is in grave turmoil.
Militarily the country is at war in the tribal areas. This is firstly due to the direct assaults by the US/NATO forces based in Afghanistan, which have manifested themselves in the form of missile strikes / drone attacks, cross border raids etc. Secondly, the US is utilising the Pakistan armed forces themselves to further this assault. Here the full brunt of the Pakistan military has been hurled at the tribal people in order to quell them but without decisive results. Over a thousand Pakistani soldiers have died fighting this American war against their own brethren. Further, after sustained assaults by Pakistani troops and heavy shelling by Pakistani tanks and artillery, many thousands of tribal civilians have perished and over 700,000 have been displaced. Probably topping the roll of shame is the Pakistan Air Force’s (PAF) actions against its own people. Whilst the Gazan Muslims were being haplessly bombed by the Israeli air force in front of a horrified world stage earlier this year, the PAF have been busy doing the same against their own people, killing hundreds. The only difference being the complete media blackout in Pakistan, designed to hide from the public the rampant bloodshed being inflicted on the tribal people. Continue reading
By Akbar S Ahmed
Seated a few yards in front of President Obama as his invited guest at the White House on Friday, March 27, I heard him describe the areas I had been in charge of–including Waziristan–as “the most dangerous place in the world.”
Obama was laying out what I suspect will become the signature foreign policy effort of his presidency. He had shifted the American focus of the last eight years from the Middle East to Afghanistan and Pakistan. Ultimately he will be judged by the success or failure of the objectives he laid out in his speech. As if to confirm the sentiment of Obama’s speech, at the same time as he delivered it, a suicide bomber in the Tribal Areas of Pakistan blew himself up and seventy other people in a mosque at Friday prayer. Around the same time, an Afghan soldier, trained by Americans, turned his gun on two American soldiers killing them and then shot himself. The stakes, therefore, could not be higher.