Pashtun leader, MNA Mohsin Dawar arrested from Quetta airport

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Mohsin Dawar is barred from entering Balochistan, government officials said.

According to reports, PTM leader and Member of Pakistan National Assembly, Mohsin Dawar has been arrested from Quetta airport. Mohsin Dawar and his accomplices were first stopped at the airport for a while and subsequently arrested.

“I have just landed in Quetta and I have been stopped from leaving the airport by security agencies. I have been told that my entry to Balochistan has been barred again for 90 days. The state thinks it can break our resolve with such petty tactics. They can’t. #DaSangaAzadiDa (What kind of independence is this)”, Mr Dawar stated on his official Twitter account.

He attached the photo of the official notice along with his post, “the entry of Mohsin Dawar and Ali Wazir, leaders of Pashtun Tahafuz Movement (PTM) are banned in  any district of Balochistan, for 90 days in the best interest of public peace and security,” the notice read.

“Why are Pashtuns, Baloch and Sindhis are being made to feel like second-class citizens of this state every day?” He asked in a response on social media.

“Even by blocking airports and land routes, the voice of the rights of Pashtuns, Baloch and other minorities cannot be silenced,” he said.

“By repeating the same history, state should forget about getting ​​different results. The voice against oppression and barbarism will not be lessened but will rise more vigorously,” he added.

Reacting to the arrest of Mohsin Dawar on his arrival in Balochistan, BNP leader and MNA, Sardar Akhtar Mengal said, “I have already said that Balochistan is a no-go area.” While referring to the army, he said in his tweet that “only the ones with boots or boot cleaners are allowed here”.

The Human Rights Council of Balochistan (HRCB) while condemning Mohsin Dawar’s arrest, said that “The detention of Mohsin Dawar, a member of National Assembly, is highly condemnable and violation of right to freedom of movement. The HRCB demands an immediate release of him. He must be allowed to enter Balochistan freely.”

It may be mentioned that Manzoor Pashteen, Chairman of the Pashtun Tahafuz Movement (PTM), has also been banned from entering Balochistan by the government since 2018.

Formerly named the “Mehsud Tahafuz Movement”, the movement rose to prominence in January 2018 when it began a justice movement for Naqeebullah Mehsud, who was “extra-judicially killed in a fake encounter staged by the police officer Rao Anwar in Karachi”.

When the movement gained popularity among the Pashtuns in late January 2018, the word “Mehsud” in its name, which referred to the Mahsud tribe from Waziristan, was changed into “Pashtun” to refer to all Pashtuns.

In November 2018, PTM launched a justice movement for Tahir Dawar, a police officer and Pashto poet who was abducted from the capital Islamabad and tortured to death. His corpse was found 18 days after disappearance in the Dur Baba District of Nangarhar Province, Afghanistan.

PTM, as well as Tahir’s family, demanded that Tahir’s murder must be investigated through an international commission rather than a Pakistani one because the case involved two countries. PTM again gained international press coverage in February 2019 when the Balochistan Police allegedly extra-judicially murdered one of the leaders of PTM, Arman Loni, in Loralai.


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