Brussels, [Belgium]: The multi-billion dollar China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) will have its serious implications on the region, said human rights and political activists at an event in Brussels, Belgium.
The conference titled “Why Balochistan Matters: The impact of China Pakistan Agreements on the future of the region” was held at International Press Club where activists from Balochistan, Sindh and Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) participated.
The event organised by Paris-based Baloch Voice Association was also attended by members of Pakistan Minority Alliance and human rights activists from parts of Europe.
Munir Mengal, President of Baloch Voice Association said, “These are the voices we want to present in front of the international community. We want the European Commission, European Parliament and European Organisations to know the sort of concerns the people living there have from these kind of strategic designs from China and Pakistan which they are going to impose those on these people. They are going to loot their resources, going to suppress them and subjugate them”.
Munir added that, “We have jointly sent a message to the state that we people, we do not want these your designs. And we also sent a message to international community that how this Islamic State of Pakistan is suppressing and looting us”.
“We have asked the Red Cross to announce the Baloch prisons as the “prisoners of war”. We are in a state of war with a country which have occupied out territory, said Munir.
The resistance against the $47 billion CPEC project is rising in PoK (Gilgit Baltistan) and other parts of Pakistan except its Punjab province. The project is a network of roads, railways and energy pipelines aiming to connect western Chinese cities to the sea port in Gwadar.
His Highness Suleman Ahmedzai – the Khan of Kalat said, “We are occupied for almost 70 years now. The Sindhis say they are being persecuted, where as Kashmir is also a disputed territory. There are four disputed territories where the CPEC is passing through – China’s Xinjiang Uyghur region, Kashmir, Afghanistan and then Balochistan.
“The more is going to go forward, the resistance with be more to it” he added.
The human rights activists from European countries said that China has more strategic interest then economic by constructing CPEC project.
Claudia Heidelbery, a German human rights activist said, “We must put pressure on ourt western leaders to act now because Europe and the USA are also in danger because of the strategic designs of China on the new Silk route to Europe. It will also have influence on Europe”.
Shafi Muhammad Burfat, Chairman of Jeay Sindh Muttahida Mahaz (JSMM) said, “CPEC is a strategic design of Pakistan and China to convert the region into a war zone. It will give birth to political tensions in the region”.
He added that “CPEC is a project by Punjab to occupy the land of Sindh and Baluchistan with the help of China. On the other hand, China wants to bring its Navel forces to the Indian Ocean and station its Army in Pakistan to make its stronghold in the region. It’s a big threat to the entire region.”
Sardar Shaukat Ali Kashmiri, the Chairman of United Kashmir People’s National Party, who lives in exile, blamed Pakistan for promoting religious terrorism.
He said, “The politicians of Pakistan claim to have made sacrifices in fighting against terrorism. On other side they are glorifying those people at the international forums who are renowned terrorists and belong to religious motivated organisations”.
“They they are using religion as tool and implements their agenda on the force of gun. If Pakistan uses to glorify them, the world should know that this is Pakistan’s duplicity,” added Kashmiri.
A delegation from Pakistan Minorities Alliance also participated at the event and raised issues concerning Christians, Hindus, Sikhs and other minorities facing atrocities in Pakistan. They raised the issue of Blasphemy law in Pakistan.
The speakers also raised the issue of human rights violations in Balochistan where enforced disappearances and killings of political activists and locals are rampant. At present, Pakistan Army is carrying out military operation in many parts of the province, which locals claims, have resulted in the death of many civilians.
Baloch claims that Pakistan is involved in genocide of the Baloch people in the wake of exploiting resources including gas, gold and other minerals.
Speakers at the conference disclosed that despite being a resource rich region, only 25 per cent of the population has access to electricity, as compare to national average of 75 per cent.
The male literacy rate is 18.3 per cent and the female literacy rate stood at 7 per cent. Balochistan has the highest infant and maternal mortality ration in South Asia.
A government report in 2009 revealed that Balochistan is the most backward province in terms of HDI (Human Development Index) in Pakistan. (ANI)