19 February 2013
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At least 92 members of Hazara died, including some 20 women and 18 children, more than 200 sustained serious injuries and 30 people gone missing when a bombed ripped through a densely populated fruit market situated in Hazara Town, a Hazara enclave, in Quetta on Saturday, 16 February, 2013. It happened just 38 days after a similar organized attack on Alamdar Road, another Hazara enclave, claimed over a hundred lives.
More than 1100 Hazaras have been killed over last one decade in Pakistan’s largest province, Balochistan, by Al-Qaeda-cum-Taliban linked militant groups such as Lashkar-e-Jangvi (LeJ) and its affiliates under the very nose of the government and it’s law enforcement agencies.
The state of Pakistan; the elected government, law enforcement agencies and an otherwise hyperactive judiciary, has blatantly failed to protect the ethno-sectarian minority in Quetta. Inaction of the security forces against the terrorist outfits has resulted to a serious perception that they are complicit in the genocide of Hazaras in Balochistan. Such concerns have been raised by a number of human rights organizations, including Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Amnesty International.
The acting Governor of Balochistan province, Nawab Zulfiqar Magsi, has confessed that “the terrorist attack on the Hazara community in Quetta is a failure of the intelligence and security forces”. However, we believe that terrorists groups such as Lashkar-e-Jangvi (LeJ) operate under the patronage of the country’s military establishment and it’s intelligence agencies which is evident from the fact, among others, that a handful of killers succeed to launch terror attacks on Hazaras repeatedly without being apprehended or even chased. We, therefore, stage a world-wide hunger strike unless our demands are met:
1: Declare a state of emergency regarding the Hazara state of affairs, as authorized by the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.
2: Apply diplomatic pressure on Pakistani government to immediately cease acts of discrimination against the Hazara and to stop supporting terrorist groups who commit violent acts against them.
3: Ask the Refugee Convention’s state parties to protect Hazara asylum seekers and grant them asylum.
4: Establish an international truth Commission to investigate crimes against the Hazara.
5: Open comprehensive cases concerning genocide and gross human rights violations in international courts such as the ICC.
6: Appeal to international media to investigate and report on activities against the Hazara, particularly in Afghanistan and Pakistan.