The family of Abdul Hafeez Zehri along with the families of other missing persons, staged a protest in front of the Karachi Press Club, on Wednesday.
Abdul Hafeez is a businessman, originally from Khuzdar district of Balochistan. He was reportedly abducted by the UAE’s secret agencies in Dubai.
Rashid Hussain’s family also joined the protest rally in Karachi. Hussain is Zehri’s cousin, who was also forcibly disappeared allegedly by the UAE intelligence agencies in 2018. Hussain was reportedly extradited to Pakistan after six months. His whereabouts are unknown since his disappearance from the UAE.
The demonstration was also joined by the wife of missing Abdul Hameed Zehri, Voice for Baloch Missing Persons’ leader, Mama Qadeer Baloch, Ghaffar Baloch and the organiser of Baloch Solidarity Committee Karachi, Amna Baloch.
Students including social activist Naghma Sheikh and workers of other political and social organizations also participated in the demonstration. Demonstrators held banners and placards with slogans against the illegal transfer of Hafeez Baloch to Pakistan, including the slogans: “UAE Release Hafeez Baloch”.
Talking to the protesters, Abdul Hafeez’s sister Fatima Hameed said that their family had moved to the UAE only after facing severe difficulties in Pakistan. Earlier, many members of the family have been killed. “My husband, Hameed Zehri was also taken into custody by the local police and intelligence agencies from Karachi last year and was disappeared later”, said Fatima.
According to Hafeez’s family, he was forcibly disappeared by the UAE intelligence agencies on January 27 this year, from Dubai’s International City. While Abdul Hafeez’s cousin and rights activist, Rashid Hussain was also abducted from the UAE, in 2018. Abdul Hafeez is an eyewitness to the arrest of the missing Rashid Hussain and the sole breadwinner of the family.
Hafeez’s sister said: “We call on the United Nations and other human rights organizations to ensure the recovery of my brother who was illegally detained in the UAE.”
Baloch circles and social media activists have been running a campaign on twitter with #ReleaseAbdulHafeezZehri.