Frontier Corps chief in Balochistan rejects HRW report -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Frontier Corps chief in Balochistan rejects HRW report

By Saleem Shahid

QUETTA: The Inspector General of Frontier Corps in Balochistan, Major General Obaidullah Khattak, has termed a report of the Human Rights Watch on the law and order situation in Balochistan one-sided and partial and an attempt to discourage security forces and encourage organisations involved in terrorist activities in the province.

“I reject and condemn HRW`s one-sided report as the human rights organisation did not consult any stakeholder before releasing it,” he said while speaking to editors of local newspapers and journalists at an Iftar party held in the FC headquarters here on Wednesday.

In reply to a question, he dispelled a perception that the FC was involved in forced disappearances and throwing of bullet-riddled bodies of political activists.

“The Frontier Corps has nothing to do with forced disappearances and throwing of bullet-riddled bodies,” Gen Khattak said, adding that he was ready to help in the investigation of such incidents. He said the state agencies concerned should investigate and trace out the elements involved in killings and picking up of Baloch political activists.

“The agencies concerned should fulfil their responsibilities in exposing the elements involved in these killings,” the Frontier Corps IG said.

Gen Khattak was critical about the role of tribal elders, including Nawabs and Sardars, of Balochistan and said that despite coming to power they were doing nothing for their people.

The FC IG said that all possible efforts would be made for the development of the province, but no one would be allowed to kill innocent people. “A state within state will not be allowed at any cost and action will be taken against those who challenge the writ of the government.”

He said that there was no reason to rule out the involvement of foreign hand behind the unrest in Balochistan. The government had enough proof about foreign involvement in terrorist activities in the province and the issue had been raised at a very high level, he added.

Gen Khattak said that certain elements wanted to create a Karachi-like situation in Balochistan and other parts of the country, but “they will not be allowed to do so”.

He said that the law and order situation had improved a lot in different areas of the province, particularly in the restive Kohlu district, while incidents of attacks on forces and government installations had shown a downward trend since February this year.

About 80 incidents of attacks on gas installations were reported in February last year, while the number had fallen to eight in June this year.

“Around 900 civilians were killed and over 1,400 injured, while more than 200 security personnel were martyred in terrorist attacks and bomb blasts in Balochistan last year,” he said.

General Khattak, however, expressed concern about increasing incidents of kidnapping for ransom in Balochistan and other areas of the country. He alleged that influential people were involved in the business.

He called upon law enforcement and other officials concerned to play their role in eliminating the gangs involved in the crime.

He said that the FC was ready to help deputy commissioners and police officers whenever they called the federal force.

Referring to the Baloch-Pakhtun Jirga that was held in collaboration with the FC on Aug 14, he said it had extended support and cooperation to law enforcement agencies to secure peace in Balochistan.

He, however, said that cent per cent results could not be achieved unless basic facilities were provided to locals.
Source: Dawn