Awaran: Two brothers ‘forcibly disappeared’ by Pakistani security forces

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Two brothers, Siraj and Mehran, from Balochistan’s Awarann district have reportedly been forcibly disappeared by Pakistani security forces and taken to an undisclosed location.

According to the human rights committee of the Baloch National Movement (BNM), the brothers were summoned to the Gishkaur military camp and have not been seen or heard from since. Siraj had previously been abducted and held in confinement for two years before being released, but he has been forcibly disappeared once again. Mehran, who worked as a laborer in the United Arab Emirates, was home for the holidays when he was forcibly disappeared.

In another incident, Murtaza Zehri, a resident of Balochistan’s Khuzdar district, has reportedly been forcibly disappeared for the fourth time, allegedly at the hands of the police and the Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD). Zehri had previously been disappeared in 2010, 2015, and 2021.

Enforced disappearances are not uncommon in Balochistan, but there has been a sudden increase in the number of reported cases since the start of the year. In the past four months alone, at least 10 documented cases of enforced disappearances have been reported from Khuzdar.

In May, Javed Baloch s/o Bashir Ahmad, Bashir Ahmad s/o Taj Muhammad Sumalani, and Bashir Ahmad’s younger brother were taken away in Khuzdar. In April, Shehzad Raisani, Jalil Baloch, Abrar Jattak, Javed Zehri s/o Mir Hasan Zehri, Ali Hasan Zehri, and Ghulam Nabi were forcibly disappeared and have not returned home. In March, Khalid s/o Muhammad Hasan and Asif s/o Abdullah were also disappeared.

The families of the disappeared persons have been protesting and demanding their safe release, but no progress has been made so far. The issue of enforced disappearances remains a major concern in Balochistan, and human rights organizations continue to call for the government to take action to stop these violations of human rights.

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