WASHINGTON: Groups representing various ethnic minorities of Pakistan have formed a joint platform – South Asian Minorities Alliance Foundation – against what they alleged as the massive human rights violation by security forces and ruling establishment of the country.
Two Republican Congressmen – Thomas Garrett from Virginia and Scott Perry from Pennsylvania – extended their support to the newly formed group in their fight against human rights violations in Pakistan.
“You don’t take American money and oppress your people with our money. That’s not good,” Congressman Perry told the gathering of people representing various ethnic groups of Pakistan – Mohajirs, Baloch, Gilgit and Hazara. He has voted in House of Representative against funding for Pakistan.
“This might be the day that marks the beginning of a great movement that changes the world. You shouldn’t have to be afraid in America or anywhere. You should not have to be afraid because of who you are and what you believe in,” Perry said.
“I am not sitting here advocating any sort of armed intervention anywhere in the world. I am saying this, if the American people and the American government will not stand up and speak for those who have no voice, who will?” asked Congressman Garrett.
Alleging that Pakistan’s current constitution has failed to provide safeguards to the country’s ethnic and religious minorities, Nadeem Nusrat of the recently formed Voice of Karachi said that Pakistan should not be allowed to enjoy the status of a “major non-NATO ally” until it agrees to adopt “consociational democracy and start respecting human rights.”
“The Christian minorities, Sindhis, Muhajirs, Hazaras, Pashtuns, Gilgit-Baltistan and the Baloch are all in one way or other target of Pakistani state terror,” Nabi Bakshsh, representing the Baloch National Movement, said.
“Nowadays there’s hundreds and hundreds of people on the street demanding self-rule and end to Pakistan’s colonial rule in Gilgit and Baltistan,” Sange Sering, chairman of the Movement for Democracy in Gilgit-Baltistan, said.