November 2000 News

Pakistan settling terrorists in PoK to convert locals into Minority

14 November 2000
The Daily Excelsior

SRINAGAR: Two Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) based parties have charged the Pakistan Government with settling terrorists, drug and arms smugglers, and Taliban activists in Balawaristan to convert indigenous people into minority. Balawaristan National Front (BNF) and Karakoram National Movement (KNM) have said that Pakistan was violating un Security Council resolutions which call for establishment of local authority after complete withdrawal of Pakistani forces and civilians from the region. They were being settled in Balawaristan to turn the local people into minority, Abdul Hamid Khan, Chairman of BNF said in a communication to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan. These terrorists were being used to undertake hostile activities against Jammu and Kashmir, Afghanistan, Central Asian countries, Russia and Sinkiang in China, Khan said in a letter which was made available to PTI here. He said property worth millions was ruined in Balistan and innocent lives were lost due to ISI’s cross-border terrorism, but no compensation was paid to the local people who were badly affected due to these activities. Khan said Pakistan had increased its forces, civilians and intelligence agencies including ISI to curb political, economic and cultural freedom of the people in these areas. Terming the steps of Pakistan Government as Violation of UN resolutions, Khan said these parties were not allowed to carry out their activities. This was the reason why more than 70 political activists including Khan himself were facing sedition cases, he said. He said local magazines, ‘Balawaristan Times’ and ‘Gilgit Digest’ were banned and their copies seized. ISI was threatening political leaders and workers within Balawaristan as well as those who were in Pakistan, Khan said in his communication. He said 21 activists of the two organisations were arrested on August 14 - Pakistan Independence Day - this year as they had organised to observe the day as ‘Black day’. They were tortured in Gilgit and Ghizer torture cells by the Pakistani administration, he alleged. These detainees were implicated in false cases of bomb blasts which were carried out by ISI, Khan charged, urging Annan to save the innocent BNF and KNM members.


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