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PAKISTAN: A student leader is missing after his arrest by the ISI as witnessed by his associates

Dear friends,

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received information regarding the disappearance of a student leader from Balochistan province. He has been missing after his arrest from the meeting of the executive committee of his organisation by the notorious intelligence agency of Pakistan, the ISI. The personnel from the Frontier Corps (FC) of the Pakistan Army were also with the plain clothed persons of the ISI and it was told to the people at the meeting of the particular student organisation that since the organisation is banned so they were arresting the leader for violating the government’s rules. Since then his whereabouts remain unknown.

Some days before his arrest he told the BBC in a video recording that one day he will be arrested by the intelligence agencies and may be killed extrajudicially like other Baloch students.

CASE NARRATIVE:

Mr. Zahid Baloch alias Baloch Khan, the chairman of the Baloch Student Organisation Azad (BSO-A) was arrested from the secret hideout in the suburbs of Quetta city, the capital of Balochistan province, on 18 March by persons in plain clothes who identified themselves as being from the ISI. They were accompanied by uniformed FC men. He was holding a meeting of the members of the executive committee of the BSO-A. The ISI personnel raided the meeting place and arrested Baloch. They told the participants that since the BSO-A is a banned organisation therefore the meeting is illegal. The question must be asked as to why, if the organisation is banned then why did they not arrest all of the participants? In fact, they had been following Baloch for some time with the intention of arresting him.

The BSO-A was banned in 2012 by the federal ministry of interior on the charges of being a terrorist organisation.

After his arrest the people there protested and persons from the FC pointed their weapons towards the students and threw Baloch in the four-wheel double cabin vehicle. They told the students that they can contact the police station. The family members of Baloch Khan and his friends went everywhere to search for him. They had not made his arrest public on the advice of his family for the reason that he would be killed like other Baloch students. After one month, on 18 April, the acting chairperson of the BSO-A, Miss Kareema Baloch, along with other student leaders of the organisation held a press conference and informed the media about his disappearance after his arrest. She told the media that Pakistani secret agencies and security forces abducted the organisation’s Chairman, Zahid Baloch aka Baloch Khan from Quetta on March 18, 2014 at 5pm and that this had been witnessed by herself and other members.

They apprehended that Baloch khan must be going through severe torture and intelligence persons will kill him like other Baloch people during the illegal detention and his bullet riddled body will be dumped on the road as is the usual practice of the secret agencies.

BSO-A has decided to sit on a hunger strike against the abduction of their leader outside the Karachi press club. The protest will continue until the safe recovery of Zahid Baloch. The 20 students including some ladies have joined the hunger strike. One of the student leaders has announced he is on a hunger strike unto death.

Mr. Baloch Khan told the BBC that he will be arrested in coming days and will also be killed extrajudicially like other Balochs. For further details, please watch the video.

Meanwhile the Baloch Republican Party, also a banned organisation, says that in Turbat city, Pakistan security forces have raided houses in the Dasht area and killed Jangyan Baloch on 18 April at midnight. Forces claimed that Mr Jangyan was involved in attacks on security forces but the family denied the allegations and said they had no link with any armed or political party.

SUGGESTED ACTION: Please write the letters to the authorities calling on them to immediately recover Mr. Khan Baloch from the illegal detention center of the ISI and FC. Please show your apprehension that he would be tortured severely during the detention and that it is entirely possible that he would be killed as hundreds of Baloch people have been killed after their arrest.

The AHRC writes a separate letter to the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances calling for their intervention into this matter.

To support this appeal, please click here: link to appeal

SAMPLE LETTER:

Dear ...,

PAKISTAN: A student leader is missing after his arrest by the ISI as witnessed by his associates

Name of victim: Mr. Zahid Baloch alias Baloch Khan Son of Illahi Bux Kurd, resident of Naal, district Khuzdar, Balochistan Names of alleged perpetrators: The Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) and Frontiers Corps (FC) Date of incident: 18 March 2014 Place of incident: Quetta, capital of Balochistan

I am writing to voice my deep concern regarding the disappearance of a student leader from Balochistan after his arrest by the persons from ISI and FC. His arrest was witnessed by his fellow students and members of the Baloch Student Organisation Azad (BSO-A).

I am informed that Mr. Zahid Baloch alias Baloch Khan, the chairman of the BSO-A was arrested from the secret hideout in the suburbs of Quetta city, the capital of Balochistan province, on 18 March by persons in plain clothes who identified themselves as being from the ISI. They were accompanied by uniformed FC men. He was holding a meeting of the members of the executive committee of the BSO-A. The ISI personnel raided the meeting place and arrested Baloch. They told the participants that since the BSO-A is a banned organisation therefore the meeting is illegal. The question must be asked as to why, if the organisation is banned then why did they not arrest all of the participants? In fact, they had been following Baloch for some time with the intention of arresting him.

The BSO-A was banned in 2012 by the federal ministry of interior on the charges of being a terrorist organisation.

I find it appalling that after his arrest the people there protested and persons from the FC pointed their weapons towards the students and threw Baloch in the four-wheel double cabin vehicle. They told the students that they can contact the police station. The family members of Baloch Khan and his friends went everywhere to search for him. They had not made his arrest public on the advice of his family for the reason that he would be killed like other Baloch students. After one month, on 18 April, the acting chairperson of the BSO-A, Miss Kareema Baloch, along with other student leaders of the organisation held a press conference and informed the media about his disappearance after his arrest. She told the media that Pakistani secret agencies and security forces abducted the organisation’s Chairman, Zahid Baloch aka Baloch Khan from Quetta on March 18, 2014 at 5pm and that this had been witnessed by herself and other members.

It is greatly feared that Baloch khan must be going through severe torture and intelligence persons will kill him like other Baloch people during the illegal detention and his bullet riddled body will be dumped on the road as is the usual practice of the secret agencies.

Members of the BSO-A have decided to sit on a hunger strike against the abduction of their leader outside the Karachi press club. The protest will continue until the safe recovery of Zahid Baloch. The 20 students including some ladies have joined the hunger strike. One of the student leaders has announced he is on a hunger strike unto death.

I am informed that Mr. Baloch Khan told the BBC that he will be arrested in coming days and will also be killed extrajudicially like other Balochs. Please see: www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qfi9I1D4_.

Meanwhile the Baloch Republican Party, also a banned organisation, says that in Turbat city, Pakistan security forces have raided houses in the Dasht area and killed Jangyan Baloch on 18 April at midnight. Forces claimed that Mr Jangyan was involved in attacks on security forces but the family denied the allegations and said they had no link with any armed or political party.

I therefore urge you to ensure the safe recovery of Mr. Baloch Khan from the illegal detention of the ISI and FC. If any harm is done to him there will be no doubt as to who is responsible as, once again, his arrest was witnessed by many of his associates.

I also urge you to stop the practice of illegal arrests and keeping persons incommunicado and the subsequent extrajudicial killing of detainees.

Yours sincerely (Click here for addresses and link to send an appeal)

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