Quetta: Protest Demands Action Against Enforced Disappearances

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A demonstration against enforced disappearances was organized Tuesday in Quetta by the Voice for Baloch Missing Persons (VBMP). The demonstration, staged in front of the Quetta Press Club, saw participants ranging from various organizations, student groups, and individuals from different socio-political backgrounds.

Family members of the missing individuals, leaders from the National Party, and Nasrullah Baloch, Chairman of VBMP, addressed the crowd, shedding light on the escalating issue of enforced disappearances. They claimed that this issue impacts nearly every household and the situation is deteriorating each day.

Nasrullah Baloch was quoted as saying, “The process of recovering missing persons has come to a standstill,” and claimed, “over forty Baloch have been forcibly disappeared from various parts of Balochistan just within the past month.” He, along with other participants, urged the state to alleviate the anxieties of the families awaiting the return of their loved ones.

During the protest, the wife of Jameel Ahmed Sarparah, who has reportedly been missing for the past eight years from Quetta, shared her ordeal. She lamented that despite her efforts over the past eight years, her husband remains missing.

Saira Baloch, a resident of Khuzdar who has been seeking recovery of her missing brothers for the past five years, drew attention to the devastating impact of enforced disappearances on families and called for an immediate end to this grave violation of human rights.

Several Marri families from New Kahan, Quetta, also joined the protest, sharing distressing accounts of their loved ones who were taken into custody by state forces years ago and are still missing. The perceived apathy of state institutions was a common grievance among the protestors. One shared, “We cry out in the streets, waiting for our loved ones, but it feels like nobody listens.”

The demonstrators appealed to the government and human rights organizations to address the ongoing enforced disappearances in Balochistan and to facilitate the recovery of the missing persons. “No Baloch is safe today, whether in Balochistan or elsewhere. Even our students studying outside Balochistan are disappearing,” a protestor voiced, a sentiment that was echoed by many. “If this grave violation of human rights is not halted, the consequences will be horrifying.”

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