Dr Manan Baloch killed by Pakistan military allegedly during an exchange of fire
Baloch separatist leader Dr Manan Baloch was killed on Saturday along with four of his companions when Pakistan military launched a security operation at Kili Dattu village, Mastung area of Balochistan. Dr Manan was General Secretary of the Baloch National Movement (BNM) a political group which claims to be a peaceful movement seeking independence from Pakistan.
Balochistan Times stated that two other party members Sajid and Babu Noroz were killed alongside Manan who was said to have been forced into hiding along with other party members “due to the military’s ruthless crackdown on the party”. Manan had been staying with two brothers – Ashraf and Haneef, who are also BNM members.
Dr Manan Baloch posted by Shameer Baloch in December 2014
Balochistan Times described Manan as follows,
“Dr Manan was born in 1968 in Mashkay and graduated from Bolan Medical College, Quetta, in 1999. He served as a medical officer in several areas, including Jahoo, Awaran, Greshag and Mashkay. In 2011, he resigned as a medical officer, refusing to be a Pakistan government employee.”
Tammana Baloch posted the following graphic image of the deaths on Twitter,
“Gen. Secretary of BNM Dr. Manan Baloch with 4 others killed in mastung this morning”
According to Dawn media, Manan was a senior leader of the banned Baloch Liberation Front (BLF). Balochistan Home Minister Sarfaraz Ahmed Bugti held a press conference alongside other officials claiming the BNM supports militant activities and “Manan and four other men were allegedly involved in subversive activities, including attacks on law enforcement agencies.” Weapons and ammunition were said to have been seized at a property where the men were killed. Dawn reported that according to Bugti, “security forces had conducted 239 intelligence-based operations in Balochistan over the past two months in which 22 militants were killed and 14 others injured.”
Balochistan is a region where enforced disappearances and extra-judicial killing are common. Baloch activists are frequently the target of what they call “kill and dump” policy with bodies found that are often badly mutilated and showing signs of torture. According to the Express Tribune, the National Commission on Human Rights (NCHR) had been due to hold a four-day seminar on Balochistan’s political and human rights situation. It was postponed with the official reason given as “lack of funds” however the paper reported, “a source in the ministry of law has suspected that the NGO had to withdraw its financial support under duress by ‘some’ quarters who are against any debate and discussions on human rights situation in Balochistan.”
Karima Baloch Human Rights Defender, Political activist and Chairperson, BSO Azad and Baloch National Front said, “I strongly condemn the brutal assassination of Baloch political giant Dr Manan Baloch by Pakistan’s terrorist army. Dr Manan Baloch was not a ‘terrorist’ but a key political leader of the Baloch freedom movement. His legacy remains alive.”
Bugti claimed, “subversive activities in the province were parts of attempts to sabotage the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project” and stated that “security forces of the country would foil all such moves.” Malik Siraj Akbar, Foreign Policy Analyst who met Manan (respected for his work with Internally Displaced persons, IDPs) in 2009 termed his killing a “political assassination”. He wrote,
“The Chinese are making robust investments in Balochistan under the multi-billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) in order to “develop” the port in Gwadar. Meanwhile, they asserted their anguish toward the Pakistanis over the slow pace of reaching consensus on the controversial project. Dr. Manan, the leader killed on Saturday, for instance, was a staunch critic of the CPEC. The ethnic Baloch people view the project as a colonizing endeavor by the Pakistani military and the Chinese to usurp the Baloch land and resources.”
For full story read following link,
“The Political Assassination of Baloch Leader Dr. Manan”
Karima Baloch had earlier said, “the people of Balochistan are paying for the price of CPEC in blood while Pakistan and China partner position against the US and West.”
“Slain Baloch leader Dr Manan will be buried later today in Mastung’s Kadh Koocha area” via Noori Baloch
Kiya Baloch a freelance correspondent said that the BNM had called for a “three day shutter down strike in Balochistan.
Dostin Baloch tweeted,
Azad Baloch posted,
#BNM lost a great leader Dr manan baloch. Pak army is killing baloch political workers and doctors. why the whole world is silent
“Baloch separatist leader Dr Manan killed in military raid”
Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights/WOT and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad. She is a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”.