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11 August – Balochistan Independence Day

(Protest and Meeting in London)

Three days before Pakistan's secession from India, Balochistan had already been declared an independent state. The independence of Balochistan was recognised by the government-to-be in Pakistan through an announcement from Dehli on 11 August 1947.

On 12 August 1947 The New York Times published Pakistan's announcement which read: “Karachi, Aug, 11, 1947 [AP] – Among the congratulatory messages read to the Pakistan assembly today was one from United States Secretary of State George C. Marshall. An announcement from New Dehli said that Kalat, Moslem State in Balochistan, had reached an agreement with Pakistan for a free flow of communication and commerce, and would negotiate for decisions on defense, external affairs and communications. Under the agreement Pakistan recognizes Kalat as an independent, sovereign state with a status different from that of Indian states”. [The New York Times, Published: August 12, 1947, Copyright © The New York Times]

Within 24 hours of the declaration of Independence in 1947, the Khan of Kalat formed Baluchistan's House of Commons and the House of Lords. On 16 th December 1947 Khan of Kalat called a meeting of both houses of Balochistan to discuss the possibility of joining Pakistan. All the members from both Houses had unanimously rejected the idea of joining Pakistan.

However the state of Pakistan invaded Balochistan on 27 March, 1948. The illegal and forceful occupation of Balochistan by the Pakistani army resulted in the killing of many workers and members of the Independent State of Balochistan, as well as the imprisonment of the Khan of Kalat and his family members in their palace. Death, destruction, torture, imprisonment of Baloch people and the looting and plundering of their natural resources have been the result of this occupation. From Pakistan's inception, the freedom-loving Baloch people have been struggling against the Pakistani occupation in order to regain their lawful sovereign independent state. August 11 is Balochistan Independence Day and Baloch mark this day as a ‘National Day.' They are determined to celebrate it until such time when Balochistan is liberated from the foreign occupiers.

Earlier on the same day (11 th of August 2009) there will be a protest in front of 10 Downing Street to highlight the ongoing Human Rights violations in Balochistan by both Iran and Pakistan. The protest is also meant to highlight the recent heinous acts of these states i.e., the mass abductions, arrest and humiliation of political and student activists and other innocent citizens in Pakistani occupied Balochistan and mass executions of Baloch political prisoners in Iranian occupied Balochistan. A petition will be handed over to the British prime minster at the end of the protest.

Following are the venues for the protest and the meeting:

Protest venue: 10 Downing Street (in front of British PM's house)

Nearest Tube Station: West minister Tube Station

Time and Date: Tuesday 11 August 2009 at 2:00 pm to 4:00pm

Meeting Venue: The Centre for Polish Arts and Culture [ http://www.posk.org/index_e. html ]

238-246 King Street, Hammersmith, London W6 ORF

Time: 5pm to 8:30 pm

Nearest Tube Stations: 1.Stamford Brook 2.Hammersmith

There will be a Dinner party after the meeting

All Baloch residing in the UK, Sindhi and other Human Rights activists are invited to join the protest and meeting to show their solidarity with oppressed people of occupied Balochistan.