Friday, 3 July 2015

Emancipate 2 million people of Gilgit Baltistan from the slavery of Pakistan, Hamid Khan, Chairman BNF

Emancipate 2 million people of Gilgit Baltistan from the slavery of Pakistan, Hamid Khan, Chairman BNF
Date: 30th June 2015
His Excellency Secretary General United Nations, New York

Gilgit Baltistan (Pakistan China Occupied Gilgit Baltistan) which comprises of 72000 Sq KMs of disputed territory sandwiched between China, Afghanistan, India and Pakistan, is currently under the occupation of Pakistan in violation of UNCIP resolutions adopted on 13th August 1948, 5th January 1949 and 28th April 1949. Pakistan has kept its occupation of the area on the pretext of a fraudulent agreement between Pakistan and two of its stooges (Sardar Ibrahim, and Choudhary Gholam Abbas) from Pakistan occupied Jammu & Kashmir, without the knowledge and due consent of the people of Gilgit Baltistan. Pakistan hatched up this so-called agreement on 28th April 1949 - the same day when UNCIP had asked Pakistan to withdraw its forces from this disputed territory. In 1963 Pakistan illegally conceded 7000 Sq. KMs area of Shimshal, part of Hunza (Occupied Gilgit Baltistan) to China for the construction of Karakorum Highway (KKH) which is being used extensively by both China and Pakistan for economic as well as for military purposes.

Pakistan is using KKH for importing nuclear and missile accessories from China without the knowledge and consent of the local residents who are the actual ancient inhabitants of the land. In addition, a large number of hideouts, bunkers, tunnels and small Air strips have been constructed along this highway to deploy/stock their nuclear arsenal. This poses a serious threat to the life of human beings, animals, plants and even the long-surviving heritage of the region.

It is not out of place to mention that in the same year i.e.1963, China had assured UN that it accepts the disputed nature of Gilgit Baltistan pending in the UN and that its acceptance and occupation of Shimshal from Pakistan is temporary and conditional, and also that a final agreement will be struck with the legitimate sovereign authority after the settlement of Jammu & Kashmir dispute.

I would like to highlight that, instead of withdrawing its forces and civilians from Gilgit Baltistan as well as from its occupied part of J&K within a period of 3 months, as mandated under the UNCIP resolution of 28th April 1949, Pakistan has, on the contrary, increased the quanta of its forces in Gilgit Baltistan to manifolds and has also settled hundreds and thousands of foreigners including Pathan fundamentalists from its own territory and other foreign nationals of China and Afghanistan to deliberately change the demography of this disputed land.

Pakistan has been perpetually violating the fundamental rights of the people of Gilgit Baltistan, including political rights, right of vote to choose their own representatives for the parliament, right of free expression, right to have a share in the revenue from the natural resources (including Uranium, Gold, Copper, and Molybdenum which is used in space technology by China), and right of access to Justice (indigenous people are given death sentences without legal and constitutional High Court and Supreme Court and without the right to appeal with the President of Pakistan or elsewhere) for the 2 million local inhabitants, in violation of both UNCIP resolutions as well as Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

While Pakistan has no right to establish its own political and religious parties in this disputed part, on the very contrary it encourages, promotes and supports its own political and religious parties and discourages indigenous nationalist political parties with its full state power.
I would like to draw your Excellency’s attention to an event preceding the so called elections illegally conducted by Pakistan in the disputed Gilgit Baltistan on June 8, 2015. A mere four days prior to these sham elections, in a yet another open violation of UNCIP resolutions, its forces stationed at Gilgit tortured and arrested several local nationalist political leaders to pave their way for completing the "selection" process of its own stooges in the name of elections. Some prominent names among those who were arrested are:

Safdar Ali, leader Balawaristan National Front (BNF), Col. (Retd.) Nadir Hassan of Blor Thinkers Forum, Iftikhar Hussain, Akbar Hussain, Muddasar, Wasim, Faqeer Hussain. These leaders alongwith them many supporters were arrested in front of the UN Military Observer’s Office at Jutial Gilgit, on 4th June 2015 just 4 days before the so-called elections/selection.. These nationalist political leaders were simply planning to present their memorandum to the UN observers, stating their grievances against the Pakistan China Economic Corridor conspiracy (a secret sale deed of Gilgit-Baltistan) and against the fraud elections. The nationalist leaders were stopped and many of them were tortured on the orders of Pakistani Military by its Punjabi Police officer. Moreover, they have been framed under Sedition and anti-terrorist laws of Pakistan. The occupation regime has set up JIT (Joint Investigation Team, consisting of ISI, MI, Police and several other expert torturing bodies) to send a message to the whole local population, so that nobody may dare raise his voice to challenge orders from the Pakistani occupation regime. They were allowed to torture physically by anti-terrorist Court judge for 9 days in the ISI headquarters at Helipad near Gilgit Airport. This is the same judge who has already given life imprisonment to the political people of Hunza including Baba Jan, who were protesting for justice against the Police who had killed 2 protestors in Hunza, Gilgit.

This is the plight of the UN-declared disputed Gilgit Baltistan under Pakistani illegal occupation, where political leaders are being treated as terrorists and real terrorists are actually free to torture and even kill political and religious opponents who dare to simply not obey the enslaving orders of the occupying forces and their intelligence agencies. Military proxy Talibaan have been declared brothers (statement of Sartaj Aziz, in charge of foreign affairs). This is Pakistan’s worst colonial rule where infamous terrorist laws are being imposed to deprive the innocent 2 million people of their due basic and political rights, awarded to them over six decades ago by UNCIP resolutions as well as by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The people of Gilgit-Baltistan, particularly the nationalist political leaders are always charged under Pakistani sedition sections, despite the fact that Gilgit Baltistan is disputed under UNCIP, and its status has been accepted as disputed by the very constitution and Supreme Court of Pakistan itself. Pakistani laws cannot be legitimately applied to those who are not even Pakistani citizens by international law and by Pakistan's own constitution.

It may be recalled that Pakistanis had also arrested BNF and other nationalist leaders just a week before the so called elections even in 2009. Is this not a farcical election under the Military then, who just want to select their own puppets in the name of elections?

All Pakistani Political parties like Imran Khan’s Tehriq-e-Insaf, Sajid Naqvi’s Tehrik-e-Islami, Majlise Wahadat Muslimeen and other Pakistani parties like PPP, PML(N), JUI, MQM and JI are acting like 2nd wives of Pakistan Army. They never dare to challenge army’s foreign and security policies, behaving just like dumb and obedient wives for Pakistan army. Military had been deployed in Gilgit Baltistan on the request of these Pakistani parties, just to get them selected by the show of force, instead of the count of free vote. Balawaristan National Front (BNF) had rejected and condemned this type of fraud and pre-rigged election drama. We also fear that the deployment of Pakistan Army is an exercise to force the people and its so-called Selected body of Gilgit Baltistan Legislative Assembly (GBLA) not to challenge its design, by which they conspire to hand over this area to China to implement its illegal economic Corridor agreement in violation of UNCIP resolutions.

Your excellency, if this Pakistan-China Economic Corridor conspiracy is not checked in time, South Asia and rest of the civilized world, eventually, will have to face serious environmental and geopolitical consequences, besides human catastrophe. In this project of 46 billion dollars it is proposed to construct 6 Mega Dams (including Diamar Bhasha Dam, Bonji, Henzel Gilgit, Skardu and other parts of Baltistan). As a result of this a large area of the Gilgit Baltistan region will be submerged due to the construction of unusually large water reservoirs in the world’s highest barren mountain ranges. Besides dams, China and Pakistan also plan to construct Railways under these high mountains, to make the movement of their forces easier and quicker, to be able to suppress the people of this region, and very likely, to be able to advance beyond it. Pakistan also plans to further deploy large numbers of security forces and members of their secret agencies to provide security to keep their control over the area and to coerce the local population into submission.

The extent of geographical and human destruction that will be brought about due to the realization of these illegal construction projects can neither be fully estimated nor imagined. I would also like to mention here that after the construction of the KKH in early 1980s, mass killings of local people was perpetrated on the basis of their religious and political beliefs in the towns and homes of Gilgit under the command of Pakistan Army during 1988. The sole purpose of this genocide was to create a sectarian division among the indigenous people, so that nobody would dare to raise their voice against Pakistani occupation and its unhampered illegal use of the land for terrorist activities inside as well as across the borders. Pakistani regime is perpetrating a similar approach against the protesters of this illegal Economic Corridor agreement once again, by declaring them as Indian agents.

There is no legal/constitutional judicial mechanism in place to protect the people against mass human rights violations. Many indigenous people are facing death sentences in Gilgit Baltistan Jails for their petty crimes without giving them access to any legal/constitutional recourses like High Court and Supreme Court.

On the other hand, Pakistani terrorists who actually commit terrorism are never brought to any of these illegal and un-constitutional courts set up in the region. Some of Pakistani terrorists, who were actually caught by local Police in defiance of the ISI, were facilitated to escape from prisons or taken back to Pakistan on one pretext or the other by Pakistani occupation regime to let them free. Local residents working in administration, Police, Education and Security Forces are not promoted for the top jobs and are always put under the ultimate control of Pakistani citizens. Indigenous people working in government service have been insulted, degraded and are never trusted. After the so-called Empowerment Package of 2009, Pakistani nationals are deputed in the region even for low ranking posts in Police and Administration in order to firmly hold their iron grip over the region.

The holding of elections in Gilgit Baltistan on 8th June 2015 is just a new drama by Pakistan to befool the international community, UN, and specially the EU which had passed a resolution on Gilgit Baltistan in 2007 under Baroness Emma Nicholson. The absence of free and independent Judiciary, independent media, and human rights organizations in Gilgit Baltistan immensely helps the Pakistani regime to openly violate the chapter of Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Anyone who dares to protest against the atrocities of Pakistani administration and its intelligence agencies, is brutally tortured and eventually eliminated. It is extremely sad to note that innocent protestors were killed in Chilas, Gilgit, when they were just peacefully protesting against the construction of Diamar Bhasha Dam on their land, without their consultation. Similarly, innocent protestors were also killed in Hunza. 

In addition, after these brutal killings a large number of innocent supporters who were peacefully protesting against these killings were arrested, declared as terrorists, and were brutally tortured by intelligence agencies. Many of these peaceful protesters, including Baba Jan, were awarded life imprisonment by the illegal and unconstitutional terrorist courts in Gilgit.
According to the UN resolutions as well as Pakistan's official stand, Pakistan has no right to change the demography of Gilgit Baltistan by settling its own citizens in the area, it has no right to adversely change our geography and put the lives of 2 million people into great danger by illegally constructing 6 mega dams. Pakistan has no right to make any agreement with any country on behalf of Gilgit-Baltistan, unless the 2 million people of this land are granted their due rights by impartial referendum under UN mandate.

In view of the above mentioned facts, we the 2 million indigenous people of Gilgit Baltistan (Pakistan and China occupied) and Chitral (borders with Al-Qaida Taliban controlled area of Badakhshan, Kunar and Nuristan provinces of Afghanistan) hereby make our appeal to the Civilized world to put sufficient pressure on Pakistan and China to vacate the occupied Gilgit Baltistan by simply committing to their obligation under UN resolutions. Furthermore, we also seek support from the UN in urging Pakistan to end its illegal occupation of Chitral (which was tributary to Muharaja of Jammu & Kashmir).

Finally, Balawaristan National Front (BNF) appeals to the UN on behalf of the 2 million indigenous people of Gilgit Baltistan, to ask the Pakistani regime to withdraw sedition and terrorism charges against the innocent political leaders of disputed Gilgit Baltistan, whom are facing double death sentences or double life imprisonments merely for their crime of handing over memorandums against the fraudulent elections and the so-called China-Pakistan Economic Corridor to the UN Military observers stationed at Gilgit. We also appeal to you excellency to take necessary measures to emancipate the 2 million people of Gilgit Baltistan from the forceful clutches of Pakistan by implementing UNCIP resolutions regarding Pakistan Occupied Gilgit Baltistan.
Abdul Hamid Khan
Chairman, Balawaristan National Front (BNF)
Head Office Majini Mahla, Gilgit, Balawaristan (Pakistan and China Occupied Gilgit Baltistan). 
Resident in Political Asylum: Brussels, Belgium.

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