Marri’s speech in the UK House of Commons
October 28, 2009
(28-10-2009): The Baloch have a long history of
struggle against repressions and oppression by the Pakistani
and Iranian states. Our history, however, pre-dates the
formation of both Pakistan and Iran. The Baloch have a
history which goes back thousands of years.
During the British Raj, Britain annexed a strip of land adjoining
Afghanistan and named it (“British Balochistan”).
The Baloch tirelessly campaigned for independence during
the final decades of the British Raj. When the British left
the Indian subcontinent the Baloch declared their Independence
on 11 August 1947. Balochistan remained a sovereign state
until it was forcefully occupied by Pakistan army on 27 March
1948. Iran had already occupied western part of Balochistan
in 1928. Iran’s occupation of western Balochistan was
a part of a ploy by the British to bring Iran on their side
against the Russian expansion.
Since the occupation Iran and Pakistan have used brute force
to subjugate the Baloch. The international Community by keeping
silence have legitimized the forceful occupation of Baloch
land and the inhumane treatment committed against them.
The current spate of violence in Balochistan started in early
2000 when the Pakistani dictator Musharraf came into power
through an illegal military action. Pakistan’s army
have used modern and lethal weapons like, Phosphorus and
cluster bombs ‘which are supplied by the West’ against
Hundreds of thousands of Baloch people have been displaced,
many hundreds killed and thousands have been extra judicially
abducted by the Pakistani Intelligence agencies ever since.
Relatives have tried all peaceful means to find out the whereabouts
of their loved ones, who have disappeared without a trace,
to no avail. There are currently more than 6000 people missing
in Eastern Balochistan (occupied by Pakistan).
During Musharraf’s dictatorship hundreds of Baloch
including two top Baloch leaders Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti and
Nawabzada Balach Marri (one of my brothers) have been murdered.
Apparently Musharraf has got away with these crimes. In fact
it was Musharruf “the Pakistani general Penuche” and
his Jihadist army who created world’s two most deadliest
organisations; Al-Qaeeda and the Taliban. These are the two
most destructive fundamentalist organizations that are hell
bent to destroy secular nations both Muslims and non-Muslims
alike. Ironically, he is presently treated as a celebrity
and is giving lectures to the International community on
terrorism! No one so far within the International Community
has challenged him for the crimes that he and his cronies
have committed in Balochistan.
Besides, all other criminal army generals come and stay in
Western countries after their retirement. Instead of holding
them accountable for their crimes, they are given sanctuaries
to carry on with their lavish lifestyle.
Even though a new government came into power after 2008 election
in Pakistan but their policy towards Balochistan is much
the same, the faces have changed but the biased, brutal and
corrupt system is still in place. Unfortunately during this
so called democratically elected government three top Baloch
political leader, namely Ghulam Mohammed Baloch, Lala Munir
Baloch and Sher Mohammed Baloch were abducted by Pakistani
Intelligence Agencies from their lawyers’ office in
broad day light, severely tortured for few days and finally
murdered in cold blood. Their bodies were found in a deserted
area after a week.
Similar atrocities are also being committed against Baloch
people by the Islamic Regime of Iran in Western occupied
Balochistan. There too hardly a single day goes by without
arrests, torture and execution of innocent Baloch people.
Problem of smaller nations and the responsibility
of the International Community: If we take a look
at the struggles experienced by occupied nations there is
a realisation that such struggles have always been ignored
by the International Community. The Western democracies instead
of siding with the oppressed are backing the oppressors.
They are collaborating with Turkey against secular Kurdish
movement; they have helped Sri Lanka against the Tamils and
they are siding with Pakistan against the Baloch people.
This biased approach has to stop and International Community
must urge these occupying states to stop the slaughter of
the oppressed Nations and abide by International laws.
Such discriminatory actions of the International community
have compelled the occupied Nations to stand up to these
states and sometimes they are forced to take extreme steps
in their own defence. Nations like the Kurd, the Tamils and
the Baluch are pushed against the wall and left with no option
but to resist the state brutalities and to defend themselves.
These oppressive states especially Pakistan have benefited
from International laws on terrorism & the war on terror.
Pakistan is protecting terrorists and using the war on terror
as a weapon to blackmail the west. Unfortunately instead
of holding Pakistan responsible the West is ignoring their
crimes and complying with their unjustified demands.
A recent example is the proscription of Baloch liberation
Struggle in the UK and the arrest of my colleague and myself
on flimsy terrorism charges. One can understand why Pakistan
would proscribe the secular Baloch movement – because
Pakistan wants to justify the human rights violation in Balochistan
in the name of fight against terrorism. The UK had no excuse
for proscribing the secular Baloch liberation movement but
to please the Pakistani dictator Musharraf. The UK however
should know that if it was not for the secular Baloch people
in the region, today Balochistan would have been full of
Taliban extremists. Imagine how hard it would be to tackle
extremism in an area twice as big as the UK full of Taliban
and their supporters.
These days we hear the news that the Taliban are moving to
Quetta, the capital city of Balcohistan. Baloch have always
warned the western powers time and again about the spread
of Taliban in their region. And in many instances Baloch
have openly said that Taliban are being systematically settled
in Quetta in order to counter the secular Baloch national
Similarly we see other oppressive states are using the so
called “war on terror” to undermine the national
struggles of oppressed Nations. When the Sri Lankan cricket
team was attacked in Pakistan, the Pakistan state media and
officials, including the Prime Minister of Pakistan, stated
that the attack was carried out by Lashkar-e-Toiba , an Islamic
However after a meeting with the Sri Lanakan president in
Libya the Prime Minister of Pakistan changed his statement
and blamed the Tamils for the attack, without a shred of
proof. This is another example of collusion between two states.
Those states that have illegally annexed other nations tend
to collaborate closely with each other against the Nations
under their occupation.
The United Nations especially the UN Human Rights Council
has become a forum where states support and ignore the wrong
doings and violations committed by other member states. Stateless
Nations have no or very little say in the UN, for this very
reason The United Nation has, by and large, ignored the illegal
occupation of weaker Nations.
In order to keep Balochistan under their occupation the Pakistani
Army and the Punjabi controlled state administration have
dominated Pakistan’s institutions and the seats at
the United Nations and other international forums. It is
only they that interact with the outside world on behalf
of the state. The Baloch are deliberately excluded from these
key institutions. Their presence in such matters is absolutely
none. In their eyes my participation in this meeting is an
act of treason because we are not meant to speak on an International
forum. The exclusion of voiceless nations from International
Organisations would encourage the oppressors to continue
their atrocities against our people.
Oppressive states are globally unified and have combined
forces to justify their criminal acts; they are trying nationally
and internationally to criminalise the normal and just activities
of suppressed Nations in order to continue their hegemony
over them. It is the responsibility of stateless Nation like
the Kurd, the Tamils and the Baloch to unite and challenge
their unjust acts on every forum. We must inform the International
community about their inhuman acts and remind the West of
its responsibilities to our defenceless nations.
Therefore I appeal to all human Rights Organisations and
Humanitarian workers to unite and raise voice against the
illegal occupations and human rights abuses of nations like
The meeting was sponsored by CAMPACC and British
Tamil Law Foundation, in the UK House of Commons and was
by hosted by Soibhain McDonagh MP. The participants of the
meeting discussed 1) the impacts of ‘terrorist’ bans
on communities seeking self-determination & struggling
against occupation abroad such as the Kurdish, Baloch and
Palestinian people. 2) Collusion among ‘security’ agencies
in undermining self-determination, especially though ‘anti
terror’ laws. 3) The role of such laws as
an instrument of foreign policy and domestic repression;
and means to resist and undermine such laws through defence.
McDonagh PM and Estella (founder of CAMPACC) chaired the
meeting. Kazim Aqpak from Kurdish Federation UK, Les Levidow
from CAMPAAC, Hyrbyair Marri, Baloch leader, a Tamil representative
(spoke on behalf of Jan Jananayagam) and Matt foot lawyer
of Shanthan (Arunachalam Chrithanthakumar) have spoken of
different aspect of terrorism laws and the war on terror
and its impacts on occupied nations like the Kurd, the Baloch
and the Tamils.