List of Young Baloch Men/Women killed by Iranian Regime 2004-2010

Following is an incomplete list of young Balochi men and women killed by the Iranian regime between 2004 to 2010.

Prison…………….…………… Hanged/Killed ………… Name ………..…. Date

Qazalhesar prison, Karaj …… Hanged ……  Ahmad Shahbakhsh ….. 20100608

Qazalhesar prison, Karaj…… Hanged……….. Sanjar Totazahi ………..20100608

Qazalhesar prison, Karaj …… Hanged ………..Baqhi Amini ……20100608

Prison of Zahedan ……………… Hanged ………..Jamshid Mir ……20100526

Prison of Zahedan …………Hanged……….. Abdol Hamid Rigi ……20100524

Balochistan ……………………Killed………… 4 , unkonwn ……….. 20100523

Jask ………………………………Killed …………Zaman Balouchi ……20100522

Nasir Abad ……………………Killed ………..Dorra Shahdostzahi…… 2010-05

Nikshahr………………………Killed ………..1 , unkonwn …………….20100509

Prison of Kerman …… ……Hanged ………Abdolnaser Moradzahi ……20100419

Prison of Kerman …………Hanged ………..Nezar Berahui …………….20100418

Prison of Kerman………… Hanged ………..Faizullah Berahui ……20100418

Prison of Isfahan …………Hanged …………….Ghader …………………20100412

Sarawan ……………………Killed …………….Three, unkonwn ……20100406

Jakigwar/Negor …… ……Killed……………. Three, unkonwn …… 20100406

Balochistan ………………Killed …………….Barkat Zamorani ……20100318

Balochistan………… …… Killed …………….?? , Unknown ……20100318

Balochistan/Kerman …… Killed …………..Mohamad Ali Bolaidai ……20100227

Iranshahr…………………… Killed ……….. One, unkonwn …………….20100224

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged …..Dadelah Rigi Kordi Tamandani……20100221

Iranshahr ………………Killed …………….Eisa Dostkam …………………20100204

Sarawan …………………Killed ……………. Two, unkonwn ………………..20100131

Zahedan …………………..Hanged ………..Khodayar Rahmatzahi …… 201001-?

Prison of Khash ………..Hanged ……Allahnezar Naroi(Shahbash) ….. 20100120

Iranshahr ……………………Killed ……Moradbakhsh Kadkhodai ……20100107

Taybad ………………………… Killed …………Four, unkonwn ………..20100101

Prison of Zahedan ………………Hanged …………Mosa M …………….20091216

Prison of Zahedan……………… Hanged …………Haleghdad F ………..20091216

Prison of Zahedan ……………… Hanged ………..Ghader R …………….20091216

Mirjaweh …………………………Killed …………….One, unkonwn…… 20091207

Khash ………………………………Killed ………..Three, unkonwn ………..20091114

Prison of Zahedan……………… Hanged …… Abdolhamid Rigi ……20091103

Prison of Zahedan ………… Hanged ……….Khairmohamad Ozbak ……20091028

Balochistan…………………… Killed ………..Four, unkonwn …………….20091022

Sarawan …………………… Killed……………. One, unkonwn ……….. 20091014

Balochistan/Kerman………… Killed …… One, unkonwn ……20091003

Taybad………………………… Hanged ……….. Five, unkonwn ……20090929

Balochistan…………………… Killed ………..?? , unknown……….. 20090927

Taybad………………………… Killed ………..9 , unkonwn ………..20090914

Mirjaweh…………………… Killed ………..One , unkonwn ………..20090913

Mirjaweh…………………… Killed ………..One , unkonwn ………..20090901

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged ………..Masoud Ghamshadzahi…… 20090725

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged …………Ayub Rigi ……………………..20090725

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged ……Manucher Shahbakhsh ……20090714

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged …… Mohamad Hasan Shahuzahi…… 20090714

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged ……Abdolrazaq Rashidi ……20090714

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged ……Yaqub Ghamshadzahi …… 20090714

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged ……Abdolbaset Shaihaki …… 20090714

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged …… Edris Noutizahi …………….20090714

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged ……Abdoqeyas Didan Naroui ……20090714

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged ……Abdosaboor Rakhshan ……20090714

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged…… Asadullah Wafaee ……………. 20090714

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Abdolhahaleq Mirbalouchzahi….20090714

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Tareq Abadiyan …………………20090714

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged ……Yahya Rigi ……………………..20090714

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged …… Khalil Ahmad Rigi ……….. 20090714

Balochistan……………… Killed ………..One, unknown …………….20090707

Karaj…………………… Hanged……….. Khodabakhsh Rigi …………….20090704

Karaj ……………………Hanged ……….. Najibullah Gorgij ……………20090704

Karaj…………………… Hanged ………..Jamshid Haleqdadi ……20090704

Qum…………………… Hanged …………….Mohamad- Kh …………….20090701

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged…… Ahmad Dastgoshadeh Naroi…… 20090620

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged…… Esmail Qaderi…… 20090620

Khash………………… Killed …… Haji Hozoor Bakhsh Shahnawazi …… 20090608

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged ……Abdol Hamid Rigi …… 20090606

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Reza Qalandarzahi…… 20090606

Zahedan…………………..Killed ……Abdolbasir Mosazahi ……20090605

Zahedan-Bam………………… Killed …… 4, unknown……………. 20090605

Kerman …………………………Hanged ……….. 1-5 persons……….. 20090603

Zahedan…………………… Killed ………..Saeed Hashomzahi ……….. 20090603

Zahedan…………………… Killed ……… 10 , unknown …… 20090531-20090606

Zahedan ……………… Hanged ………..Haji Noutizahi ……………. 20090508

Zahedan ……………… Hanged……….. Qolamrasool Shahuzai ……20090508

Zahedan……………… Hanged ………..Zabiullah Naroei …………….20090508

Khash ……………………Killed ……….. One, unknown …………………20090525

Prison of Iranshahr…… Hanged ………..Abdol Qafour – K ………..20090522

Zabol………………………… Killed ……….. One, unknown …………….20090522

Zahedan…………………… Killed ……….. One, unknown ……………. 20090515

Hajiabad/Zahedan…… Killed ……Allah Nezar Shahbakhsh ……20090513

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged ………..Reza Qoli – S ……………. 20090508

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged ……Mohammad Mehdi -Kh ……20090508

Balochistan……………… Killed ……….. 3, unknown …………….20090505

Taybad ……………………Hanged ………..8, unknown …………….20090502

Khash………………………… Hanged …… Abdolbari Norzahi ……20090429

Balochistan/Kerman………… Killed …… 4, unknown ……20090420

Zamuran/Balochistan/Pak…… Killed ……Bibi Moluk……………. 20090414

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged ……Normohamad Ismailzahi ……20090310

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Mojib Rahman Kord …………….20090310

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged …………….Babak Kord …………….20090310

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged …..Mohamad Joma Khan Hossseini ..20090310

Balochistan border …… Killed ……….. 6 , unknown …………………20090308

Iranshahr……………… Killed …………….Behzad – Sh ………………… 20090305

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……………. 1, unknown …………….20090303

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged ……Molawi Khalil Bahramzahi ……20090303

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Salahudin Zardkohi ……20090303

Mirjaweh ……………… Killed …… 4, unknown ……20090302

Esfahan……………… Hanged ……Omid ……20090221

Taybad ………………Killed ……9, unknown …… 20090203

Taybad ………………Killed ……10, unknown ……20090131

Taybad……………… Killed …… 6, unknown ……20090121

Taybad ………………Killed ……2, unknown …… 200901-?

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged ……Bohadoor Naroi ……20090103

Prison of Zahedan .Hanged.. Jalal Akbar Joma Aloshi(JalalShirani)..20090103

Nikshahr ………… Hanged …… Abdolrahman Balochzahi …… 20081228

Khash ………………Killed ……Jalal Rigi ……20081225

Zabol……………… Hanged ……Faiz Ahmad Naroi ……20081223

Balochistan………… Killed ……One, unkonwn …… 20081220

Prison of Sarakhs…… Hanged …… MohamadAmin Berahui ……20081213

Taybad…………………… Killed …… 4, unknown ……20081210

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged …… P – D ……20081206

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged …… M – M…… 20081206

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……A – R ……20081206

Prison of Zahedan…… Tortured to death …… Mohamad Berahui ……20081202

Mirjaweh ……………………Killed…… One, unknown ……20081202

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……A – N ……20081129

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged ……H – F ……20081129

Taybad ……………………Killed…… 15, unknown ……20081126

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged ……Hossein Nohtani ……20081124

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged …… Abdullah Dahmardeh…… 20081124

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged …… Mohamad Berahui …… 20081124

Mirjaweh ……………… Killed ……4, unknown ……20081118

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged…… Nazir Ahmad Nasiri ……20081110

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Jamali Bolizadeh ……20081110

Balochistan ………………Killed ……10, unkbown ……20081108

Balochistan ……………… Killed ……5, unknown ……20081103

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged …… E – M ……20081027

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Kh – N ……20081027

Jask …………………………Killed ……Shahmorad ……200810-?

Iranshahr ……………… Killed ……2, unknown …… 20081026

Rodbar/Kerman …… Hanged ……One, unknown ……20081022

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged …… Watan – Y ……20081021

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Mohamad Salim ……20081021

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Zahor – Sh ……20081021

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Anwar – D…… 20081021

Zabol ……………………Killed ……Akbar Sancholi ……20081016

Zahedan /Pir Soran ……Killed ……Ahmad Wafaee ……20081013

Zahedan /Pir Soran ……Killed ……Nader Rigi ……20081013

Zahedan /Pir Soran ……Killed…… Nser Shahbakhsh …… 20081013

Zahedan /Pir Soran…… Killed ……Allah Nezar Kebdani ……20081013

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged…… Shahram Aywani ……20081013

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged ……Ramazan Rafiee ……20081013

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged ……Sasan Dogushkani ……20081013

Kottgan/Zamuran/Pak…… Killed ……Mulla Salim Sorkizahi ……20081010

Balochistan…………………… Killed…… About 38 ,unknown …… Last 2 months

Zahedan/Sapid sang………… Killed ……Abdullah Shahbakhsh ……2008.10.06

Zahedan/Sapid sang …………Killed…… Hamid Shahbakhsh ……2008.10.06

Nikshahr………………………… Killed…… One, unknown ……2008.09.26

Zahedan …………………………Killed…… One , unknown ……2008.09.18

Iranshahr ………………………Killed ……Mohamad Hossein Borr ……2008.08.24

Prison of Zahedan………… Hanged ……Habibullah Pirwali …… 20080826

Prison of Zahedan………… Hanged …… Hossein Ali Shahraki ……20080826

Prison of Zahedan …………Hanged ……Mojtaba Mozafari ……20080826

Sarbaz/Iranshahr ………… Killed ……Sharif Sarkoeri …… 20080824

Prison of Zahedan …………Hanged ……Bahram N…… 20080820

Prison of Zahedan………… Hanged …… Hassan Sadeqpoor ……20080813

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Golmohamad Salehzahi ……20080811

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Rahim baranzahi ……20080811

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged ……Lalmohamad Zainadini ……20080811

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Asadullah Eshaghzahi ……20080811

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged…… Yaghub Mehrnehad ……20080804

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged ……Abdolnaser Tahri Sadr ……20080804

Zahedan ……………… Killed…… One, unknown …… 20080804

Zahedan……………… Hanged …… Hadi Amri son of Hamid ……20080729

Tehran-Evin ………… Hanged …… Abdolreza Shahbakhsh ……20080727

Tehran-Evin …………Hanged ……Sohrab Kamalzahi ……20080727

Balochistan ………………Killed ……One, unknown ……20080724

Balochistan ………………Killed…… One, unknown …… 20080724

Zahedan…………………… Killed ……One , unknown …… 20080721

Iranshahr…………………… Killed ……Three, unknown ……20080720

Balochistan…………………… Killed ……One, unknown …… 20080719

Zahedan………………………… Killed …… One, unknown …… 20080708

Prison of Chabehar …………Hanged ……Mohamad Zareh …… 20080706

Balochistan ……………………Killed ……Three, Unknown ……20080628

Zahedan …………………………Killed …… Abdosamad Shahbax …… 20080620

Prison of Zahedan …………Hanged ……Alireza Berahui…… 20080616

Prison of Chabehar………… Hanged ……Yunes Rahmandost ……20080615

Prison of Chabehar ……. Hanged ……Mohamad Hussein Noorzai ……20080615

Balochistan ……………………Killed …… One, unknown ……20080611

Khash-Paskoh ………………Killed ……Khodad Shohlibor ……20080607

Balochistan ……………………Killed …… 7 unknown …… 20080601

Prison of Zahedan …………Hanged ……Mousa Narouei ……20080531

Prison of Zahedan …………Hanged …… Kabali Cheraghi…… 20080531

Balochistan …………………… Killed ……9 unknown …… 20080527

Balochistan ……………………Killed ……2 unknown…… 20080519

Balochistan ……………………Killed …… One , unknown …… 20080518

Balochistan ……………………Killed ……Farhad Shanbehzai …… 20080515

Balochistan ……………………Killed ……4 unknown …… 20080515

Balochistan ……………………Killed…… One , unknown ……20080426

Balochistan ……………………Killed ……4 , unknown ……20080422

Prison of ESfehan…… Tortured to death ……Morad Borokzahi ……20080417

Daman …………………………Killed ……Shirbakhsh Sohrabzahi 20080412

Zahedan …Disapeared and killed… 2 girls from Hasshomzahi tribe… 20080411

Prison of Zahedan ….Hanged…..Molawi Abdolqodus Mollazahi ……20080409

Prison of Zahedan ….Hanged….Molawi Mohamad Yousuf Sohrabi …20080409

Balochistan/Kerman …… Killed ……One, unknown …… 20080406

Sarbaz …………………… Killed …… One, unknown ……20080401

Balochistan/Kerman ……Killed ……Three, unknown …… 20080330

Pishin …………………………Killed ……Three, unknown…… 20080328

Zahedan ……Tortured to death …. Three women from Rigi tribe ……20080323

Khash(Gohar Kouh)…… Killed …… Alam Khan Shahbax…… 20080218

Khash(Gohar Kouh) ……Killed…… One, unknown…… 20080218

Zahedan/Kerman…… Killed …… Ahmad Shahbax ……20080216

Kerman/Zahedan ……Killed ……One, unknown ……20080212

Sarawan………… Hanged ……Mohamad Aslam Mobarakzahi…… 20080131

Balochistan …………Killed ……14 , unknown ……200801

Balochistan…….. Killed …… S/O Molawi Abdolrahman Chabhari ……20080112

Giroft ……………………Killed ……5, unknown ……20080105

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged ……Abdolghayum Shahgi ……20080102

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged …… Babudin Karbalaei ……20080102

Balochistan/Kerman ……Killed ……Two, unknown ……20080102

Zahedan ……………………Hanged ……Mehdi Rigi Jawan …… 20071231

Zahedan ……………………Hanged ……Naser Hadieh Sasoli…… 20071231

Balochistan ………………Killed…… Three, unknown ……20071226

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged ……Ezat Sarani ……20071226

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……16 , unknown …… 20071226

Zahedan ……………………Killed ……One unknown ……20071224

Prison of Iranshahr ……Hanged ……Yaqoub Setodeh ……20071218

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Khodadad Shahbax …… 20071217

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged ……Mohamadreza Saleh…… 20071217

Iranshahr ……………………Killed …… 12, unknown ……20071213

Balochistan/Bam …………Killed…… Khodadad Naroei…… 20071204

Qum …………………………Hanged…… Ataullah Polzahi ……20071202

Prison of Zahedan …………Hanged …… One, unkonwn ……20071202

Iranshahr …………………… Killed ……Bakhshok Shohlibor ……20071125

Balochistan ………………Killed ……Three,unknown ……20071124

Prison of Zahedan…… Hanged ……Shamsodin Darvakh Gorgij …… 20071124

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Mahmudshah Pashtoon 20071124

Saravan…………………… Killed ……Two, unkonwn …… 20071113

Prison of Zahedan …………Hanged ……Rostam sepahi ……20071115

Prison of Zahedan …… Hanged ……Nader Klabali…… 20071111

Balochistan ………………Killed ……??-unknown ……20071107

Iranshahr ………………Hanged ……Abdolmajid A …… 20071031

Prison of Iranshahr ……Hanged …… Ismail Barani Piranwand ……20071030

Prison of Zahedan ……Hanged ……Joma Gamshadzai ……20071030

Jakigwar_Sarbaz …………Killed ……One, unknown ……20071030

Mahan ……………………Hanged ……Two,unknown ……20071028

Iranshahr ………………Hanged ……Ali Khashi ……3/3/86

Yazd …………………………Hanged …… Three unknown…… 20071027

Prison of Zahedan …………Hanged …… A.M ……20071025

Prison of Zahedan …………Hanged ……Z.Gh. ……20071025

Prison of Zahedan …………Hanged ……A.M ……20071025

Birjand …………………………Hanged ……Five , unknown ……20071022

Birjand …………………………Killed…… Two , unkonwn…… 20071019

Zahedan ……………………Hanged ……A. ……20071016

Iranshahr ………………… Hanged…… Two, “Ostadi” in aftername ……20071009

Balochistan ……………………Killed ……Six, unknown…… 20071002

Dashtyari-Chabhar …………Killed…… One, unkonwn ……20070929

Mahan …………………………Hanged ……Mohamad Bamari ……20070912

Mahan …………………………Hanged ……Omar Bamari ……20070912

Zahedan ……………………Killed …… Abdolshakor sh. aka Shakori …..20070909

Sarbaz ……………………….Killed …………One, unkonwn ……20070910

Shiraz ………………………..Hanged…… Gazawo Mahmudzahi ……20070905

Shiraz ………………………..Hanged ……Alireza Berahuei ……20070905

Khash-Zahedan ……………Killed ……Two, unknown ……20070904

Mirjaweh_Rek Malek …… Killed ……Morad Gamshadzahi …………20070828

Iranshahr ……………………Hanged …… Two, unknown …………20070824

Prison of Zahedan …………Hanged …. Shkrollah Kordi Tamandani….20070821

From Idrees Kamal at idreeskamal@googlemail.com

Socialist Pakistan News (SPN)

Who murdered Benazir Bhutto? by Christina Lamb

From The Sunday Times
May 2, 2010

Benazir Bhutto was brought back to Pakistan from exile as part of an international deal. Then she was killed — and all traces of evidence were immediately swept away. Our award-winning correspondent follows the clues to her killers in London, Karachi and Washington
Across fields of cotton and baked mud in the village of Garhi Khuda Bakhsh in southern Pakistan rises a white marble mausoleum with Mughal-style cones that shimmer in the heat. Inside lie four bodies — a father and his three children — all murdered over a 30-year span. The father was hanged by a military dictator, one son poisoned and one son shot, both by unknown assailants. The daughter was still building the mausoleum when she, too, was assassinated. Her killing was captured on live television, yet who did it — as well as how — remains a mystery.

Benazir Bhutto was Pakistan’s most important political figure, the leading female politician in the Islamic world, an Oxford and Harvard graduate who was the West’s best hope of tackling terrorism. Yet 2½ years on, and despite a $5m United Nations commission of inquiry, her murder remains unresolved.

Almost every Pakistani has a theory about who did it; practically nobody expects to find out. Pakistan’s history is dotted with unexplained political assassinations, but this time there was an unexpected twist. Bhutto’s widowed husband ended up as president, with all the government apparatus at his disposal. One might think that for once there was a good chance of establishing a culprit. Instead he had called in the UN to investigate, claiming “This thing is bigger than us.”

I had my own reasons for wanting answers. I’d known Bibi, as friends called her, since 1987, when her kind wedding invitation to a 21-year-old led to me falling in love with her country and starting a life as a foreign correspondent, covering both her spells as prime minister. I was with her on the truck in Karachi the first time they tried to kill her: two bombs killed 150 people, but she survived.

Ten weeks later, just after 5pm on December 27, 2007, they succeeded. As Bhutto left an election rally in Liaquat Park, Rawalpindi, she stood up through the sunroof of her armoured car to wave. Moments later she was dead, blood gushing from a wound to her temple, as a suicide bomber exploded himself in the crowd.

Bhutto’s action had been foolhardy when she knew there were people out to kill her, and her death sadly unsurprising in a family that has sacrificed everything for politics. What was less explicable was what happened next.

“Everything was manipulated,” says Athar Minallah, a leading lawyer who sits on the board of the Rawalpindi hospital where Bhutto was taken. “The evidence was washed away and no autopsy or investigation allowed. As a lawyer I can’t come to any conclusion, but it’s all too sinister to believe there wasn’t mala fide in this.”

In the 20 years I knew Benazir I had been both captivated by her and infuriated by her, once even deported by her. But I had also personally witnessed the lengths gone to to stop her by what she called “the Establishment” , the old guard of Pakistan’s military and intelligence, which at the time of Bhutto’s death had ruled the country for 32 of its 60 years. Despite being warned off by friends in the Pakistani media, I travelled from London to Dubai, Karachi to Kabul, Waziristan to Washington, asking questions from those involved, many of whom had never spoken out before.
If ever there was a death foretold, this was it. Bhutto’s days were numbered from the time she decided to end eight years in exile in Dubai and return home, following a deal with President Pervez Musharraf backed by the US and Britain. Under the deal, corruption charges against her, her husband and senior members of her Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) would be dropped, enabling them to contest elections. In return they would allow Musharraf to remain president. But neither trusted the other, and the military ruler had sworn he would never allow her back in power.

“We might as well have painted a bull’s-eye target on her head,” admitted a British Foreign Office minister involved in the negotiations.

Her closest friends begged her not to go back. “I said, ‘You’ve been prime minister twice, why do this?’ ” said Peter Galbraith, a former UN envoy to Afghanistan, who had been a friend since 1969, when a primly dressed Bhutto arrived at Harvard aged 16 and went to dinner at his parents’ house.

Mark Siegel, a Democrat strategist who co-wrote her last book, said goodbye to her in the lobby of the Ritz-Carlton in Washington. As he turned back to wave, he recalled the scene in The Graduate of a rain-soaked Anne Bancroft standing bereft after realising that her lover, Dustin Hoffman, is in love with her daughter. “I had this terrible feeling,” he said.
In London before her return, Bhutto told me she knew the risk. “I know there are people who want to kill me and scuttle the restoration of democracy,” she said. “But with my faith in God and the people of Pakistan, I’m sure the party workers will protect me.”

She then flew to Dubai to say goodbye to her daughters, Bakhtawar and Asifa. On October 16, the day before she was due to fly to Pakistan, she was warned by UAE and Saudi intelligence of a plot to kill her. She immediately wrote to Musharraf naming three suspects: Pervez Elahi, then chief minister of Punjab; General Hamid Gul, the retired head of Pakistan’s military intelligence, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI); and Brigadier Ejaz Shah, the former head of the Intelligence Bureau (IB). But there was no changing her mind. “The time of life is written and the time of death is written,” she insisted.

When the plane landed at Karachi and Bhutto came down the steps, she could not hold back the tears. Huge crowds had lined the streets. Waving from the top of a special bus, she was transformed, her face alive, so different to the Bhutto of the last few years in exile, gorging on ice cream and reading self-help books. I understood then why she had gone back.
But her security people were worried. The jammers promised by the Pakistan government to impede remote-control bombs were not working. Bhutto refused to go behind the special bulletproof screen in her bus that would separate her from her people. Eventually, she went to the armoured compartment on the lower deck to work on her speech. It was nearly midnight and we had been on the bus nine hours when the first blast came, throwing us to the ground. Moments later came a second, much larger, blast. There was silence, then screams, sirens and little pieces fluttering down like black snowflakes: bits of charred skin.

Bhutto had no doubt who was behind it. She emailed Mark Siegel on October 26: “Nothing will God-willing happen. Just wanted u to know if it does I will hold Musharraf responsible.”

She also called Musharraf. “He told her, ‘I warned you not to come back until after the elections,’ and threatened her, ‘I’ll only protect you if you’re nice to me,’ ” said Husain Haqqani, a former Bhutto aide who was living in the US and is now Pakistan’s ambassador in Washington.

Instead of stepping up her security, it was reduced. She was even told not to travel in vehicles with tinted windows, as this was against the law of the local government.

She appealed to the American and British officials who had helped negotiate her return. “I called everyone,” said Haqqani. “I even got the US ambassador in Pakistan, Anne Patterson, to visit her.” It did not go well. “Patterson wasn’t nice to her,” said Bhutto’s cousin and confidant, Tariq Islam. “She harped on, ‘You must not talk against Musharraf.’ The Americans never trusted her. It was a marriage of convenience.”

In November, Bhutto returned to Dubai for a few days. Her daughters believe she knew then she would not see them again. “She kept on telling us life is in God’s hands,” said her youngest, Asifa, interviewed for Bhutto, a film about her mother’s life that opens in June. “It was going to be my 18th birthday in January, and she said she wanted to wish me happy birthday in advance,” said her older daughter, Bakhtawar. “I said, ‘Don’t wish me in advance, wish me then.’ ”
The next morning, after her mother left, she found a be-ribboned box containing a silver jaguar head on a pendant. A note wished her “Happy birthday, all my love, Mummy”.

Back in Pakistan, on December 26, the day before the Rawalpindi rally, she addressed a public meeting in Peshawar and a suspected suicide bomber was caught trying to get in. That night her husband, Asif Ali Zardari, called her, begging her to let him campaign in her place. “I pleaded with her, ‘You stay home and I’ll go do the rallies. You’re the mother.’ But she said, ‘What can I do? I have to go and meet my people.’ ”

In the early hours of December 27, she was visited by General Nadeem Taj, the head of the ISI, the agency that in the past had done all it could to stop her becoming prime minister, from printing propaganda leaflets to creating a new political party. What he told her is unknown. Despite the late night, Bhutto was up early sending emails, including one to Peter Galbraith asking him to contact his friend, the Iraqi president Jalal Talabani, to send some of his jammers.
Back at her Islamabad home for a light lunch, she called her political secretary, Naheed Khan, to sit with her. Naheed had worked for her for 23 years and accompanied her through beatings, tear gas and arrests. Bhutto told her some American politicians would be coming that evening. Convinced that Musharraf was planning to rig the elections, Bhutto had collected information of a secret ISI rigging cell based in a house in Islamabad, which she planned to present to the Republican senator Arlen Specter and the Democrat congressman Patrick Kennedy.

Around 2pm, the two women climbed into her armoured, white Toyota Land Cruiser with an entourage of five men, including Makhdoom Amin Fahim, who had led her party while she was in exile, and Senator Safdar Abbas, Naheed’s husband and also a long-time aide.

As they left manicured Islamabad for the dusty streets of Rawalpindi, passers-by waved at the motorcade. In front was a blue police van and a black Mercedes containing her security chief and other officials. Behind were two pick-up trucks of her bodyguards.

Once they reached Rawalpindi and saw people massing, Bhutto stood up as usual. “ ’Pindi was hard for her,” said Naheed. Her father was killed in ’Pindi jail and she was too much excited. It was a huge gathering, we weren’t expecting, and such a charged crowd.”

As they drove out of the back of the park with dusk falling, the gates were opened. The crowd flooded out and gathered round her chanting “Jiye Bhutto” [long live Bhutto], “wazir-i-azam Benazir” [prime minister Benazir]. She stood up, climbing on the seat so that she could be seen.

Then they heard shooting. “Suddenly I felt some pressure, she had fallen on me,” said Naheed. She sobs as she recalls cradling Bhutto’s bleeding head. “She was completely unconscious, her blood seeping over me. That scene is still going on in front of me two years on,” she said.

All those in the car, and her spokeswoman Sherry Rehman, in the car behind, insist that Bhutto fell first, then a bomb went off. “As soon as she ducked down, after three to four seconds there was a bomb blast,” said Naheed. Safdar checked Bhutto’s pulse. “There was nothing.”

A bodyguard shouted “Move the car!” but the left tyres had burst in the blast. The backup car had mysteriously disappeared, so the bodyguard carried her into Sherry Rehman’s 4×4 and they rushed to Rawalpindi general hospital.
“I thought she was already dead,” said Zahid, the driver, showing the back seat of the Jeep where the bloodstains are still visible. “She was unconscious and bleeding from the left side of her neck and top right of her skull.”

At the hospital, doctors tried to resuscitate her. Sherry Rehman describes the chaos of bloodied, injured and dead victims being brought in and party workers crowding the building. Rehman found Naheed and Makhdoom Fahim in a state of shock. “The hospital wanted us to get the body out,” she said. “The whole place was heaving with people. Makhdoom and I created a diversion by driving out so they could get the body out without supporters realising. It didn’t occur to us to demand the medical report. I was sure she was shot, I heard the shots, then our heads being shoved down in the drill we’d had since Karachi, then the boom of the bomb. We never thought anyone would contradict this.”
In Dubai, Bhutto’s family had been watching on television. “All we knew was something had happened,” said Zardari. “I said, ‘Arrange a plane.’ When I came back into the room, the TV was announcing she was dead.” Bhutto’s body was placed in a makeshift plywood coffin and taken to the nearby military airbase of Chaklala.

Around 1am, the family arrived, and both they and the coffin were flown to Moenjodaro in the southern province of Sindh, to drive through the night to Bhutto’s ancestral home town of Naudero. In keeping with the Muslim tradition, she was buried the next day.

On December 30, just three days after her death, Zardari summoned a meeting of the party’s central executive committee. He asked their son, Bilawal, to read out a handwritten letter from Bhutto to the PPP. It stated: “I would like my husband, Asif Ali Zardari, to lead you in this interim period until you and he decide what is best. I say this because he is a man of courage and honour.”

Zardari told me afterwards he had no idea she had drawn up such a will. “The day her remains came to Naudero, a person came from Dubai and said, ‘I have this document Madam left with me.’ ” He said he did not know the person.
It was dated October 16, two days before Bhutto returned to Pakistan. “That was the day she’d been warned not to go back,” Zardari said, “and she wrote that letter to Musharraf showing apprehensions about certain people.”
In a shrewd move, Zardari named their son, Bilawal, as co-chairman, adding Bhutto to his name to make him Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, and said he would take over the leadership when he was old enough. Bilawal was then only 19, and starting his second term at Christ Church college, Oxford. He freely admitted he was more interested in Facebook and movies than politics.

Still in shock, nobody on the party’s executive questioned the document. Afterwards, Fahim, the party’s former leader, who had expected to take over, told me he was astonished that Bhutto would hand the party over to Zardari. Known in Pakistan as Mr Ten Per Cent, his alleged corruption was thought to be largely responsible for the demise of both Bhutto’s governments.

Torn apart with grief, Naheed was also too stunned to say anything. “She never mentioned it [the will] to me, nor had I seen it,” she told me.

Back in Islamabad, the Musharraf government appeared to be in panic. Within an hour of the attack the scene had been washed down with high-pressure hoses, wiping out almost all the evidence. Saud Aziz, then chief of Rawalpindi police, said he issued these orders after receiving a phone call from a close associate of Musharraf. The interior ministry said they were worried about “vultures picking up body parts”.

This was in stark contrast to what had happened after two assassination attempts on Musharraf in the same city, when the area had been sealed off for weeks.

With the country in chaos, there was an unseemly rush to announce the cause of death and to name an assassin. At 5pm on Friday December 28, less than 24 hours after her death, Brigadier Javed Cheema, the interior ministry spokesman, held a press conference. He said the hospital report showed Bhutto had been killed by striking the lever of the sunroof as she ducked to avoid the bomb. “There was no bullet or metal shrapnel found in the injury,” he said.

He also said intelligence services had intercepted a call from Baitullah Mehsud, head of the Pakistani Taliban, proving he was behind it. A transcript was later made available — though no audio tape — on which the militant leader is self-congratulatory and gives away his location. A week later, journalists including myself were called in to our respective embassies to be told that MI6 and the CIA had authenticated the transcript and were convinced Baitullah had carried out the attack. The former Pakistani cricket captain-turned- politician Imran Khan was incredulous. “The day after the murder they produce a tape of Baitullah saying, ‘I’m sitting here, tomorrow I’ll be having breakfast. Well done, boys.’ Is this a joke? The guy is being hunted down, on the run. Would he be talking like that?”

Baitullah insisted he was not responsible. “I strongly deny it,” he said via his spokesman, Maulvi Omar. “Tribal people have their own customs. We don’t strike women.”

In years of reporting on Al-Qaeda and the Taliban, never once had I known them not take responsibility for something. Moreover, Bhutto had told me that after the Karachi attack Baitullah had sent a message saying: “Identify your enemy. I’m not your foe.”

Meanwhile, footage had emerged in which a clean-shaven man in dark glasses was clearly visible waving a gun and firing three shots. A TV station had filmed bullets lying on the ground. Other footage showed Bhutto’s chief bodyguard, Khalid Shahenshah, gesticulating strangely from the stage as Bhutto left.

Aside from Bhutto, 22 others were killed in the attack. Family members told Pakistani media that some had bullet wounds. But no autopsies were carried out, even though they are required by law.

I started my own investigation in the sprawling port city of Karachi on the basis that whoever had tried to kill her there on October 17 was probably the same person that eventually got her.

That bombing was Pakistan’s most lethal terrorist attack, yet I was shocked to find from the local police chief that there was no investigation under way. It wasn’t even clear whether it was a suicide bomb or a car bomb, though a retired army colonel who lived round the corner sent me photographs of a burnt-out car that had its chassis number scratched off so it could not be identified.

Many of those who died were “Martyrs for Benazir”, young party volunteers who formed a human chain round the bus and prevented the bomb getting nearer. One was 25-year-old Intukhab Alam. I went to see his widowed father, Mahmood Yunis, 70, in Muhammadi Colony, Liaquatabad, one of the poorest parts of Karachi. He cannot believe the government is not investigating Bhutto’s death. “My son was a small person, but she was a great leader,” he said. “No Zardari can take her place.”

Someone else with little time for Zardari is Benazir’s niece Fatima. It was eerie going to see her: she lives in 70 Clifton, the house of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, her grandfather and Benazir’s father. He was the first Bhutto to be murdered, hanged by his former army chief, General Zia, in 1979.

Fatima was just 14 in September 1996 when her father, Murtaza, the elder of Benazir’s two brothers, was gunned down on the street, along with six of his men. The murder scene was also washed clean before investigators could arrive.
Fatima and her stepmother, Ghinwa, Murtaza’s second wife, invited me to stay for lunch. They talked of the rivalry between Zardari and Murtaza, who they told me kept a cartoon of his brother-in-law genuflecting to the Sultan of Oman in the guest toilet. It is clear who his wife and daughter believe responsible for his death. “The orders could have only come from the highest levels,” said Fatima. Her Aunt Benazir was prime minister at the time.

Bhutto’s friends and family say she was devastated by Murtaza’s death. Her cousin Tariq Islam accompanied her to the morgue in Karachi. “We went to the cold room where his blood-soaked body was and she collapsed, put her head between his feet and cried and howled, ‘You’re my baby brother, don’t do this to me.’ ”

Bhutto, who was prime minister at the time, called in a Scotland Yard team to investigate and asked Islam to be the liaison person. “Even though it was her government, they were stymied at every turn,” he said. “They wanted to see the scene, but within hours it had been pressure-washed. They wanted to see the vehicle in which Murtaza’s body was flung and taken to hospital but were told it had been taken to a garage.”

Six weeks after the murder, a coup took place and Benazir was ousted as prime minister. Scotland Yard was sent home.
Zardari was detained for allegedly being involved in the murder, as well as a number of corruption cases. He was released from jail into exile in 2004 by Musharraf and acquitted on the murder charge in 2008 owing to lack of evidence.
Last December, 18 police officers also alleged to have been involved in Murtaza’s murder were all acquitted. Some had been highly promoted. “Shoaib Suddle, the police chief who was there on the night, was made head of the IB,” said Fatima. “Zardari’s defence lawyer in the case is now attorney general.”

Similarly, following Benazir’s death, nobody has lost their job despite clear lapses in security and failures to investigate. Bhutto’s security chief, Rehman Malik, who disappeared with the backup car, is now interior minister and Zardari’s closest adviser. “My enemies are talking nonsense that I ran away,” he said when I asked why he left the spot. “I wasn’t a security officer that I had to be there. I’m not a guard or a gunman.”

Musharraf’s interior secretary, Kamal Shah, is still in his post, though it was his ministry that put out the version of events Bhutto’s friends and family dispute. Saud Aziz, who ordered the roads to be washed, was transferred to Multan, the prime minister’s constituency, but was suspended last week following the UN report.

Then there is the unexplained shooting of Benazir’s bodyguard Khalid Shahenshah, who was also in the car the night of her killing. I tracked down his best friend, Mohammed Yarwar, a former US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) agent, who met me in a house full of caged snakes on a busy Karachi road. A student activist for the party, Shahenshah ran a grocery store in Connecticut and seems a strange choice as chief bodyguard. “We hung out in New York,” said Yarwar. “He had a connection with Zardari and got to know Benazir because he would drive her when she visited.”

Shahenshah was heading security at Bhutto’s residence in Karachi, Bilawal House, when, on July 22, 2008, Yarwar got a panicked call from one of his guards, who was outside his friend’s house. “He was screaming, ‘There’s firing going on!’ ”
The guard later told him that Shahenshah had arrived home and got out of his car outside the gate. A small car approached with three men inside who began firing. “They shot 62 rounds, of which seven bullets hit Khalid,” said Yarwar. The car was later abandoned. Yarwar denied rumours that it was a gangland killing. “There was no proper investigation,” he said. “People say he might have known something about Benazir’s death. If he did, he never told me: all he ever said was that she was definitely shot. But I don’t like it. I’ve quit the PPP. ”

Fear is tangible when I start asking about Benazir’s death, something the UN commission noted, describing themselves as “mystified by the efforts of certain high-ranking government authorities to obstruct access”.

In Rawalpindi I went first to Liaquat Road, where Benazir was killed. The spot is marked by a garish painting of her on a red background surrounded by what look like pink bathroom tiles. In front lay a dried-up wreath. Behind a few barricades was a cabin where five policemen were sitting around drinking tea under a lightbulb hanging from a wire.
When I started to take photographs they became animated, telling me to go away. They noted down my driver’s numberplate, after which he refused to take me anywhere else.

I hailed another cab to take me to Rawalpindi’s police headquarters and found the charming chief police officer, Rao Iqbal. When I asked what was the usual procedure after a bombing, he said: “Our priority is to get life back to normal and remove all the rubble, but after collecting the evidence, not before.” Why did this not happen after Bhutto’s death? “The orders may have come through the mouth of CPO Saud Aziz, but it was a government agency that ordered the washing, not a policeman,” he replied, adding: “In my view it should not have been washed.”

As a result, they collected only 23 pieces of evidence, in a case where there would normally be thousands. One of the pieces was her car, and that had also been washed of any evidence. The UN commission pulled no punches, stating: “The failure of the police to investigate effectively Ms Bhutto’s assassination was deliberate.”

Police did find the blown-off face of the suicide bomber, who they say was a 15-year-old boy, on a roof. And to my surprise they told me they have five suspects in custody picked up in 2008, and five more they plan to arrest. They believe they were recruited from madrasahs and part of a team sent to target Bhutto in different cities — but they did not seem to be interested in who had sent them.

The lack of evidence has made it very difficult to establish how Bhutto died. Under pressure, Musharraf called in Scotland Yard to investigate her death. They backed his government’s version that Bhutto died after hitting her head, rather than from an assassin’s bullet. Yet every single person in her car insists she fell before the blast.
I went to the hospital hoping to see Professor Mussadiq, who led attempts to resuscitate Bhutto. I was first refused entry, then told he was at the Holy Family hospital. When I got there, they told me he was not at work. Eventually I met one of the other doctors who attended her; he would only speak off the record.

“Our main concern was saving her life, not what caused the injury, because that is done in an autopsy,” he said. “We all thought she had been shot.”

Because she was an emergency patient, the medical team had made no official report, just clinical notes. They were horrified then when the interior-ministry spokesman held the press conference in which he cited their report, attributing the cause of death to hitting the lever of the sunroof.

“They were very perturbed,” said Athar Minallah, the lawyer who sits on the hospital board. “When they couldn’t revive her, they told the police chief three times there needed to be an autopsy. He was constantly on the phone to someone else and refused, even though by law it’s mandatory.”

If how Bhutto died cannot be properly established, it seems unlikely we will ever find out who did it. In August last year, Baitullah Mehsud, the Taliban suspect, was killed by an American drone.

The person fingered by Bhutto, Musharraf, now lives in exile in London, accompanied everywhere by six Scotland Yard officers. Before Christmas I met him at a dinner at the home of a mutual Pakistani friend, where he lounged on the sofa, drinking whisky, smoking a fat cigar and handing out £50 notes to the singers.

When a reporter asked him if he had blood on his hands, he retorted that the question was “below my dignity”, going on to say: “My family is not a family which believes in killing people. For standing up outside the car I think she was to blame — nobody else. Responsibility is hers.”

The UN disagrees. “Ms Bhutto’s assassination could have been prevented if adequate security measures had been taken,” states the report. Describing the government protection as “fatally insufficient” , they point out that there were few police present to guard her, and that those posted on roofs to watch for threats did not even have binoculars.
Ask most Pakistanis who killed Benazir and they ask who benefited. A Google search on Zardari turns up Zardari jokes, Zardari corruption, Zardari assets and Zardari killed Benazir as among the most common searches. Bhutto had told friends that she would not let her husband be involved in politics again. The plan was for him to stay in Dubai. They had lived separate lives for years. He argues this was because in 20 years of marriage, he spent 11 years in jail. But when he was released, instead of Dubai he went to New York, ostensibly for medical treatment.

Her closest friends say the will is in her writing, and they believe she wanted to keep the party in the family, in the South Asian tradition. “She thought it would split into factions otherwise,” said Bashir Riaz, who knew her all her life. But they are at a loss to explain why, when Zardari became Pakistan’s president in September 2008, he did not begin an investigation.

I put this to Zardari when I went to his house in Islamabad. “The stature of Bhutto called for an independent, transparent and above-board investigation so no accusation of bias could be made,” he said. “This is bigger than us.”
He showed me a framed copy of the will. “This was the joker in the pack,” he said. “Whoever killed her wanted a weak PPP minus Benazir. They thought they would get their own choice.”

His interior minister, Malik, claimed the government are now investigating and will soon release their own report. “We are after just one more person, then the circle will be complete,” Malik said.

“I don’t want nine people strung up to avenge her death — it’s the whole system,” said Zardari. “Only when we’re prospering and we’re Singapore will she be avenged.”

Fine words. Last week, Pakistan’s parliament voted to repeal a constitutional amendment used by military dictators to give themselves sweeping powers. But it remains a nation besieged by bombings and power cuts where militant leaders go free, even holding public rallies, and intelligence agencies make people disappear. When a government delegation went to Washington last month it was clear that the army chief, General Ashfaq Kiyani, was the real power. This is the same army whose generals suggested to Zardari last time Bhutto was prime minister that he replace her because they didn’t like saluting to a woman.

From IJAZ SYED
syedi@sbcglobal.net

People’s SAARC: New Delhi Declaration

Report by Farooq Tariq

‘We the members of social movements, civil society organizations, labour unions, peasant movements, other working people’s organizations and women’s groups have gathered here in Delhi from 20th April to 23rd April, 2010 as part of the process of Peoples SAARC to forge a vision for a People’s Union of South Asia. This year’s Peoples’ SAARC is a culmination of a process of more than a decade. It reaffirms the South Asian Peoples commitment to creating a better South Asia free from all forms of discrimination, exclusion and domination. It also calls for the peoples of all SAARC countries to struggle against militarism and jingoism, and for secularism. In our diverse societies of minorities of all kinds, a secular society is crucial for national and societal harmony, human rights and national unity. It calls for equal respect among all
countries irrespective of size, and power.

‘All our countries are suffering and tribals have suffered more including violence against women. It is time that we develop new paradigms of peaceful equitable, and sustainable paths of development that truly reflect the economic potential of our countries and meet the need of our peoples. SAARC countries must ensure the rights of all workers, especially women, tribal and Dalit workers in accordance with international standards including ILO conventions, international covenants and national constitutions .Fisher peoples’ rights to fish in territorial waters be recognized and legally protected through proper mechanisms. Innocent fisherfolk incarcerated for wandering into neighbouring, sometimes disputed, territorial waters be immediately released and the presence of deep sea trawlers and foreign vessels should be banned as these are depleting fish stock and pursuing an unsustainable path apart from severely diminishing the catch of the ordinary fisherfolk.

‘Climate change and ecological degradation have become a species threat and a threat to the very survival of all life on the planet. Unfortunately the South Asian governments including those like India which were part of the BASIC alliance failed to get an equitable treaty signed at Copenhagen because of resolute resistance by the North led by the USA. Even after the Copenhagen document was arrived at no urgent steps have been taken towards reversing ecological degradation, the reduction of green house gases, all necessitating more sustainable forms of transport, construction, workers and peasants conditions and mining among others. It is imperative for a Peoples union of South Asia that vast areas of Bangladesh, parts of India and island states in the Indian Ocean are not submerged because of a lack of commitment particularly by the North.

‘In all our countries Human Rights has become a critical problem. Generally international Human Rights and Humanitarian Law is not implemented, even if already ratified. This leads to the flagrant suppression of movements that challenge the state, only some of which are violent. This is true of the entire sub continent.

‘People’s movements to protect the forests, the rivers, and other natural resources are often brutally repressed. Peoples land is acquired for a relatively paltry sum in the name of development, and their rehabilitation is well below international standards. This of course is part of neo- liberalism. However the elites have become exceedingly selfish, intolerant and oblivious of the suffering of the people.

‘A major positive response would be facilitated at the South Asia level if people to people contact throughout the region was facilitated. This would enable experts and activists to interact across countries and regions to explore possibilities of a more just, peaceful, sustainable and equitable path of development which is also gender just. On the contrary, far from instituting a visa free South Asia our governments are increasing restrictions on people to people dialogue and some of these moves have been highly retrograde. This is not only a great barrier too our goal of a Peoples Union of South Asia, but is also a severe restriction on our efforts to move towards that goal.We recognize the universality of opportunity, equal rights and dignity of all people including excluded groups and minorities; including ethnic, sexual and the differently abled. We recognize the prevalence of patriarchy, masculinity, religious extremism and caste based discrimination that deny human dignity, socio-economic and political equality and justice to the millions of backward classes and deny women sexual and reproductive health rights in the SAARC countries.

‘There is need for alternate regional trade and economic framework that meet the needs and aspirations of small and medium producers and labour. This will ensure the defeat of neo-liberal instruments such as the WTO and free trade agreements in the region. We need to work out fair trade relations within South Asia as a precondition for fair trade relations with the rest of the world. This would also provide a democratic alternative to neo-liberal free trade agreements. It would also facilitate a fair wage for those in the import-export and connected sectors.

‘The SAARC countries must beware of imperialist machinations, designed to overthrow pro-people regimes or to play countries off against another to weaken SAARC unity. SAARC countries must radically cut down expenditures on conventional arms, and move towards a South Asian nuclear weapons free zone. This would save billions of dollars for the social sector. These countries must avoid strategic alliances with the US and allied powers. We urge that there be a no war pact between all SAARC countries.

‘Inter-state relations must be based on respect and equality and all unequal treaties should be annulled. Above all, states must respect each other’s sovereignty. Military intervention and espionage operations on each others territories is the most glaring violation of this sovereignty. Terrorism has been a serious problem in Pakistan, India and recently in Sri Lanka. Where these movements involve alienation or deprivation of natural resources, there must be dialogue. Most terrorist movements are political. Military means should not be the main method of countering them. Fundamentalist movements who refuse dialogue should be countered. Militarism as a State ideology is a threat to democracy and peaceful dissent.

‘There should be recognition of health, education, housing, employment and adequate food as basic rights. More investment in the social sector is essential for a more equitable and sustainable society. The billions of dollars spent on defense not only foster aggressive militarism but also take away scarce resources otherwise available for the social sector and basic human rights. We uphold knowledge commons rather than patents which exploit our market and people. New attempts in WTO to bring generic drugs into TRIPS must be resisted so that vital medicines for HIV, new strains of Tuberculosis, Hepatitis and Malaria etc. do not become unaffordable. Unconditional cancellation of loans from international financial institutions and bilateral debt with the North, are a must for funds for socio-economic development.

‘Food banks should be set up of surplus food particularly food grains. Remunerative prices must be given to farmers for their produce. The poor must be provided food at subsidized prices. GM seeds should be banned. Seeds, fertilizers and pesticides must be provided at subsidized prices, along with diesel and electricity. Urgent steps should be taken for the forest dwellers who should have a right to the forest produce, and food and other subsidies in times of drought. Forest dwellers should have a right to the forest, and the economic exploitation of the forest. Through mining and the timber trade by corporate and contractors should be immediately stopped.

‘The right to mobility with dignity is a human right. Migrants should be assured of dignity and the right to work as well as physical protection, basic amenities and adequate wages. Safeguards for the basic rights of the local people must be instituted. Victims of trafficking, especially women and children must be protected. Similarly the rights of individuals and communities subject to forced displacement, disasters and forced eviction should be protected. Peaceful and just resolution of all conflicts in the region through political negotiations is imperative. This will include negotiations with the people of disputed territories. We call upon the SAARC governments to seriously address these concerns and demands of the people of the region. Governments must be accountable to the citizens of the countries in this region. We laud the democratic struggles and the resistance to neo-liberalism in the region. Our Peoples Union of South Asia is a rainbow coalition of democratic forces. We pledge to continue to learn, inspire, struggle and empower each other to realize this vision.’

Report on People’s SAARC Meeting
A delegation of 53 Pakistani social and political activists returned to Lahore on 25th April after attending the Peoples SAARC held in New Delhi on 22-23 April 2010. While the heads of the states of SAARC countries are meeting in Bhutan, some 300 people from across South Asia from social movements, civil society organisations, labour unions, peasant organisations, women’s groups, ecologists and human rights activists gathered in New Delhi from 20th April to 23rd April, 2010 as part of the process of a ‘Peoples SAARC’ to forge a vision for a union of South Asian peoples’. Among the participants 120 people came from Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Bhutan.

Among the prominent individual participants of the People’s SAARC Assembly in New Delhi were Mr Kuldip Nayar (veteran journalist from India), Mr Iqbal Haidar (Former Law Minister and co chairperson of the Human Rights commission of Pakistan), Mohamad Mahuruf (Janavakesha, Sri Lanka), Mr Karamat Ali (cofounder of the Pakistan Peace Coalition and Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research), Kamla Bhasin (Founder of SANGAT -South Asia Network of Gender Trainers), Samina Khan (Sungi), Arjun Karki (coordinator, South Asian Alliance for Poverty Eradication), Rezaul Karim (Equity Bangladesh), Jatin Desai (Peace Mumbai), Mazhar Hussain (COVA), Farooq Tariq (Labour Party, Pakistan), Vijay Pratap (SADED), Choudry Manzoor Ahmad president Peoples Labour Bureau, Mohammed Yousaf Baluch, chairman National Trade Union Federation Pakistan, Nisar Shah advocate general secretary Labour Party Pakistan and Bushra Khaliq general secretary Women Workers Help Line; Amongst the prominent participating organisations were: GEFONT (Nepal), National Trade Union Initiative (India), Migrant Forum South Asia, National Forum of Forest Workers (India), All Ceylon United Workers Congress, INSEC, Focus on Global South, Labour Party of Pakistan, National FishWorkers Forum (India), Pakistan Fisherfolk Forum, Labour Education Foundation, AITUC, Muttahida Labour Federation Pakistan, Bonded Labour Liberation Front (Pakistan), Shirkat Gah, Sungi, PILER, Sindh Democratic Forum, South Asians For Human Rights, Vani, Aman Trust (India), SADED (India), SAP –PK, All Ceylon United Fisherpeople Trade Union, National Trade Union Federation (Pakistan).

The latest People’s SAARC assembly held in April 2010 in New Delhi reaffirmed the South Asian Peoples commitment to creating a South Asia free from all forms of discrimination, exclusion and domination. It also called for the peoples of all SAARC countries to struggle against militarism and jingoism; and demanded of the governments to reduce defence spending and make available funds for socially useful spending on public welfare and social security for all; for a regional people’ perspective on Climate change and on environmental degradation. It called for the right to mobility with dignity across South Asia. It calls for equal respect among all countries irrespective of size, and power. The meeting called to solve the issue of water by renegotiating the existing water accords and just distribution of the water among all the SAARC countries. A broad public declaration was adopted at the conference that lists the thematic issues reflecting the concerns of social movements across South Asia. One important event of the conference was the South Asian Parliamentarians Forum in which parliamentarians from India, Pakistan, Nepal, participated. There was overwhelming consensus among them about the need for a collective platform of Parliamentarians of the region for strengthening the SAARC process and to work towards South Asian Union. The Indian Parliamentarian Mani Shankar Iyer argued at length about a shared history and a common heritage among South Asians and the need to actively build regional cooperation.

The conference resolved to lobby the SAARC governments on a set of specific demands:

– The SAARC governments should seriously engage with the issue of Climate Change and apart from adhering to the existing international commitments, should consider a common South Asian Policy on Climate and environmental issues including a regional water sharing framework. The developing countries in the SAARC region should fulfil their responsibilities vis a vis the less developed countries and the most vulnerable in the region via financial and technological means.

– The proposed SAARC University must become operational this year as envisaged originally. Students and faculty of the SAARC University in New Delhi must be granted a restriction free SAARC Visa by the Indian government.

– SAARC Governments should start sincerely and genuinely cooperating according to the commitments made in the SAARC charter and its various conventions and protocols. All governments in the region must put a halt to all kinds of covert activities against each other. They should also establish a joint mechanism to combat terrorism as per the requirements of the SAARC regional convention of 1987 on suppression of terrorism.

– SAARC Development Fund and Food Bank should become operational forthwith, in order to guarantee a right to food for all South Asians. SAARC Agri perspective 2020 should be prepared in participatory way with adequate involvement of civil society organisations.

– All South Asian governments should enter into a No-War Pact with a commitment to resolve all disputes through peaceful and democratic means only. Military expenditures should be reduced by 10% annually and funds be diverted towards social spending.

– All governments without further delay should establish a universal and portable Social security system as envisaged in the SAARC social charter.

– All governments in the SAARC region must ensure freedom of movement, the right to work and to conduct business for SAARC citizens.

At the conclusion of the conference the steering committee of the People’s SAARC met and took the following decisions.
1. A secretariat for the People’s SAARC process will be established at Kathmandu
2. Thirteen thematic working groups have been formed to develop South Asians regional campaigns
3. A People’s SAARC processes will be established in each country to mobilise public opinion towards a union of South Asian people’s.
4. A South Asians People’s Regional Assembly will be constituted within the next three months

From The SPN List
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US frame-up of Aafia Siddiqui

US frame-up of Aafia Siddiqui begins to unravel
Pakistani victim of rendition and torture
By Ali Ismail
1 February 2010

Pakistani neuroscientist Aafia Siddiqui went on trial in a federal courtroom in New York City on January 19, charged with the attempted murder of US personnel in Afghanistan’s Ghazni Province in 2008. The case against Dr. Siddiqui, 37, is rapidly unraveling due to lack of evidence and discordant testimony from witnesses.

It is becoming increasingly evident that the charges amount to a frame-up that has been staged to cover up the fact that Siddiqui, along with her eldest son, had been held without charges in the US military’s notorious Bagram prison in Afghanistan between 2003 and 2008 where they were subjected to torture. Two of Dr. Siddiqui’s younger children are still missing.

According to the account given by US authorities, Aafia Siddiqui was taken into custody by Afghan security services in July of 2008 after they alleged having found a list of US targets for terrorist attacks as well as bomb-making instructions and assorted chemicals.

Despite these claims, Siddiqui is not charged with any terror-related offenses. Instead, she is indicted for allegedly having seized an automatic weapon and fired on her Afghan and American captors when a group of FBI agents and US Army officers arrived to collect her. The most serious charge against her is using a firearm in committing a felony, the gun in question being a US soldier’s rifle.

Siddiqui was shot twice in the stomach and barely survived after medics at Bagram air field had to make an incision from her breastbone to her bellybutton to remove the bullets. It was reported that part of her intestines had to be removed to save her life.

The accusations against Siddiqui strain credulity and have been fervently denied by her relatives, her defense attorneys, and human rights organizations, all of whom claim that she had been held in secret US detention facilities where she was physically and sexually abused ever since she disappeared off the streets of Karachi in the spring of 2003 with her three children, then seven, five, and six months old.

According to the German weekly, Der Spiegel, just a few days before she disappeared, Affia Siddiqui had contacted her former professor, Robert Sekuler, at Brandeis University in search of a job, complaining that there weren’t any job opportunities in Pakistan for a woman of her educational background.

Dr. Siddiqui is a Pakistani national who was educated at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Brandeis University. In July of 2001, she and her husband at the time were scrutinized by the FBI for their alleged association with Islamic charities. Following the events of September 11, 2001 the couple returned to Pakistan at a time when hundreds of Pakistanis and other Muslims were rounded up for questioning across the US. The family resided in Karachi where Aafia Siddiqui was employed at Aga Khan University.

According to the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, Aafia Siddiqui and her children were kidnapped by Pakistani intelligence agents on their way to the airport in Karachi. Their whereabouts remained unknown until Aafia Siddiqui and her eldest son, Ahmed, were reported detained in Afghanistan in July of 2008, several years after their disappearance. While the Pakistani Interior Ministry had initially confirmed that the abduction had taken place, it later claimed to have been mistaken and stated that Siddiqui was not in Pakistani custody. This about-face was an attempt to conceal the complicity of Pakistani intelligence services in the US government’s rendition of Siddiqui to Afghanistan and her subsequent ordeal.

Aafia Siddiqui’s sister, Dr. Fauzia Siddiqui, had informed the press that she and her mother had journeyed to the US in 2003 to meet with FBI officials, who had claimed that Aafia Siddiqui would soon be released. In Pakistan, Siddiqui’s family was repeatedly harassed and received numerous death threats from sinister forces within the Pakistani ruling elite. The family was ordered not to make any public appeals in support of Aafia and her three children.

Between 2003 and 2008, when Siddiqui’s whereabouts were still unknown, the US claimed that she was working on behalf of Al Qaeda. In May of 2004, she was listed by US officials as one of the seven “most wanted” Al Qaeda fugitives. The US has also spuriously claimed that she is married to Ammar al-Baluchi, who is reported to be the nephew of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the so-called “mastermind” behind the 9/11 attacks. The claim that Siddiqui was married to al-Baluchi was based solely on coerced statements made by Mohammed, who has been repeatedly tortured.

The US military and the FBI have consistently denied that Siddiqui had been in US custody prior to her arrest in 2008. In reality, Aafia Siddiqui spent the years between 2003 and 2008 at the detention facility at Bagram air base, where many referred to her as the “Grey Lady of Bagram.”

Around the same time as her staged arrest, the British journalist, Yvonne Ridley, had been bringing attention to an unknown female detainee in Bagram prison who was known as Prisoner No. 650. In his book, “Enemy Combatant,” Moazzam Begg recalled hearing the woman’s piercing screams as she was being tortured while he was imprisoned in the same facility. According to Ridley, in 2005 male prisoners at the facility were so disturbed by her screams and sobs that they staged a hunger strike that lasted for six days.

When she was arrested in 2008, her then 11 year-old son Ahmed, a US citizen, was by her side. The traumatized boy has since been repatriated to Pakistan, where he is now living with his aunt, Dr. Fawzia Siddiqui. According to his aunt, Pakistani authorities have forbidden Ahmed from speaking to the news media.

Siddiqui’s appearance has changed markedly since 2002, according to her lawyers. She has suffered a broken nose, is deathly pale, and extremely frail, weighing about 100 pounds. When she arrived in the US, she was suffering from acute trauma, according to her lawyers who were outraged that she did not immediately receive the urgent medical attention. Siddiqui had been suffering from agonizing pain from the wounds she had sustained in Afghanistan and was slumped over in her wheelchair when she arrived in court in August of 2008.

Her trial was delayed as her lawyers argued that she was mentally unfit to participate in her own defense. However, prosecutors eventually found mental health experts to allege that she was faking her condition to escape punishment. Judge Richard Berman ruled that she was mentally fit for trial.

The paucity of media attention given to the trial is noteworthy, particularly given that Siddiqui was listed as a top Al Qaeda suspect. The tabloid press in New York City, where the proceedings have received limited attention, press has taken her guilt for granted, cynically dubbing her “Lady Al Qaeda.” The trial is being closely watched in Pakistan, where Siddiqui’s ordeal has outraged many and has sparked protests around the country.

From its beginning, the trial has been marked by questionable irregularities, and the judge has gone out of his way to accommodate the prosecutors. Not a single Pakistani journalist was granted press credentials for the opening statements last Tuesday. Defense attorneys protested the robust security measures put in place during the trial, which obviously reinforces the notion that Siddiqui poses a security threat to the US.

In a clear violation of her rights, Judge Berman has repeatedly thrown Siddiqui out of the courtroom for what he called her “outbursts”. The “outbursts,” were Siddiqui’s anguished claims of innocence and protests that she was tortured.

“Since I’ll never get a chance to speak,” she had told the court. “If you were in a secret prison, or your children were tortured…Give me a little credit, this is not a list of targets of New York. I was never planning to bomb it. You’re lying.”

The trial has also been marked by contradictory testimony from prosecution witnesses, which has undermined the case against Siddiqui.

On the third day of the trial, Assistant US Attorney Jenna Dabbs displayed several photographs of the room where the prosecution claims the shooting occurred. However, Carlo Rosatti, an FBI firearms expert who investigated the case, acknowledged last Friday that he had found “no shell casings, no bullets, no bullet fragments, no evidence the gun [the soldier’s M-4 rifle] was fired.” The only shell casing from the scene was from a 9-milllimeter pistol with which Siddiqui was shot. On the fourth day of the trial, another FBI agent testified that the FBI never found Aafia Siddiqui’s fingerprints on the M-4 rifle.

The warrant officer who shot Siddiqui also took the stand, recounting the version of events laid out by the prosecution. He claimed that on the day he and his colleagues went to collect Siddiqui, she suddenly got a hold of his rifle and aimed it at US personnel, at which point he opened fire with his 9-millimeter pistol.

When Siddiqui yelled out, “I never shot it,” she was tossed out of the courtroom for the remainder of the day.

The unnamed warrant officer, who had hobbled to the stand using a cane, was also permitted to recount how he was wounded in a recent and totally unrelated roadside bombing in Afghanistan, shedding tears as he did so. While having absolutely no relevance to the trial, the soldier’s wounds were invoked as part of a brazen attempt by prosecutors to sway the jury. Judge Berman’s allowing the testimony demonstrates the rigged character of the trial.

Sensing that Siddiqui was indeed emotionally unstable, prosecutors moved to force her to testify in the hopes that she would incriminate herself. Defense attorneys argued that she wasn’t mentally fit to take the stand. Once again, Judge Berman sided with the prosecution.

Berman warned Aafia Siddiqui that she is not permitted to speak about events prior to her arrest in July of 2008. Nevertheless, on Thursday Siddiqui repeatedly told the jury that she was held in secret prisons by US authorities, according to the Associated Press of Pakistan. She told the jury how she was shot just after she peeked through a curtain in search of an escape route. She added that it would be ludicrous to believe that a soldier would leave his gun where an allegedly dangerous suspect could get a hold of it.

“It’s too crazy,” she said. “It’s just ridiculous. I didn’t do that.”

When asked by a US Attorney about the contents of her purse which allegedly contained chemicals, bomb-making instructions, and a list of US targets, Siddiqui said, “I can’t testify to that, the bag was not mine, so I didn’t necessarily go through everything.” Siddiqui’s lawyers have claimed the bag and its contents were planted evidence. Her attorney, Elaine Whitfield Sharp, said back in 2008 that Siddiqui had been carrying what amounted to “conveniently incriminating evidence.”

“Of course they found all this stuff on her. It was planted on her. She is the ultimate victim of the American dark side,” another one of her attorneys had told the Associated Press in 2008.

Siddiqui also told the jury that her children were constantly on her mind and that she was disoriented at the time of her arrest in 2008.

On Friday, the prosecution called Gary Woodworth of Braintree Rifle and Pistol Club in Massachusetts to testify. Woodworth claimed that Siddiqui had taken a 12-hour pistol course at some point in the early 1990s. The Associated Press of Pakistan reported that Woodworth was noticeably distressed when the defense team demanded to know how it was possible for him to recall a specific individual from two decades earlier, when he’d had hundreds of students. Woodworth admitted that he had no records or documentation to back up his assertions, insisting that he was good at remembering faces.

Also on Friday, FBI Special Agent Bruce Kamerman testified that Siddiqui grabbed the assault rifle in a fit of rage. However, he appeared to be flustered when one of Siddiqui’s attorneys produced his hand-written notes in which there was no mention of her grabbing the gun.

In spite of the obviously fabricated character of the prosecution’s case, there is no guarantee of an acquittal.

Even if she is found not guilty, the fate of Aafia’s Siddiqui’s other two children, Mariam and Suleman, remains unknown. Siddiqui recounts that, while she was held in solitary confinement for five years, she was endlessly forced to listen to recordings of her screaming, terrified children. Her baby, Suleman, she said, was taken away from her immediately, never to be seen again. She said her daughter Mariam was occasionally shown to her, but only as an obscure figure behind a sheet of opaque glass.

The horrifying case of Aafia Siddiqui and her three children is but one example of the criminal and inhuman practices of US imperialism and its ally, the Pakistani bourgeoisie. Hundreds if not thousands of Pakistanis have been kidnapped by Pakistani intelligence services and handed over to US personnel to be dispatched to Bagram, Guantanamo and other “black site” torture chambers around the globe. While the Pakistani government now claims to be doing everything in its power to bring Siddiqui back to Pakistan, its supposed efforts are little more than damage control.

www.wsws.org

Information provided by IJAZ SYED

Amina writes letter to ISI chief for release of husband

I have come to know through President Musharraf’s book In the line of Fire that citizens of Pakistan were sold to Americans after taking bounties of dollars. Some of them are Dr Aafia Siddiqui along with three innocent children, Saifullah Paracha, Majid Khan, Atiqueur Rehman, Faisal Faraz and my husband Masood Ahmad Janjua.’

I request you as an aggrieved daughter of the nation to please give me this much favour as to tell me how much money should I need to pay to buy back my husband from American custody and similarly other honourable citizens of my beloved country…?’

Friday, November 07, 2008
By Usman Manzoor

ISLAMABAD: Chairperson of the Defence of Human Rights Amina Masood Janjua has asked the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) chief to help release innocent missing Pakistanis from the custody of ‘secret agencies’ of Pakistan and America.

Amina said she was ready to pay the bounty to the Americans they had given for these innocent Pakistanis and wanted to know how much money was taken against the missing persons. In a letter written to Lt-Gen Ahmad Shuja Pasha, Amina Masood wrote that she had confirmed reports of innocent Pakistanis being detained by secret agencies of Pakistan and America, which she would disclose when asked.

She wrote: ‘I have come to know through President Musharraf’s book In the line of Fire that citizens of Pakistan were sold to Americans after taking bounties of dollars. Some of them are Dr Aafia Siddiqui along with three innocent children, Saifullah Paracha, Majid Khan, Atiqueur Rehman, Faisal Faraz and my husband Masood Ahmad Janjua.’

‘I also have confirmed evidence of my husband Masood Ahmad Janjua abducted on July 30, 2005 from Rawalpindi, being still kept in Pakistan at the GHQ, 10 Corps Chaklala Garrison Rawalpindi, and at Cell 20, I-9 Islamabad (under Col Habibullah) during his three years and three months most torturous illegal detention, so far. Lt-Gen Safqaat, the then-MS to the president, also called my father-in-law Lt-Col (retd) Raja Ali Muhammad on May 31, 2006 and confirmed that Masood was alive and will be coming home.’

She mentioned: ‘Sources of my confirmed information are international Human Rights Organisations like Cage Prisoners, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, Witnesses of many released persons, and confirmation through Pakistan Army and Air force sources (which I will disclose when asked about it), that Masood is in the custody of secret agencies of both Pakistan and the US working in close collaboration in Pakistan.’

‘Since huge amounts of money was taken for Masood (violating all international and national laws, fundamental rights guaranteed under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights), Americans will never release him unless they will get their money back. I request you as an aggrieved daughter of the nation to please give me this much favour as to tell me how much money should I need to pay to buy back my husband from American custody and similarly other honourable citizens of my beloved country…?’

‘For this kindness, my very old parents, two sons, one daughter and me myself will keep praying for you all our life, if Masood is released this way by paying off the required amount,’ Amina concluded.

thenews.com.pk

Missing persons’ relatives flay government’s ‘inactivity’

By Akhtar Amin

PESHAWAR: Families of missing persons have shown deep concern over ‘inactivity’ of the government for recovery of their near and dear ones from, what they said, lock-ups of the secret agencies.

“We had pinned great hopes on the new democratic government for safe recovery of our near and dear ones from illegal custody of secret agencies. Eight months have passed but the government did nothing in this regard and became silent over the issue,” families of missing persons told Daily Times on Saturday.

Relatives of missing persons questioned that what role the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) leadership played in this regard after coming into power. They said that PPP spokesman Farhatullah Babar had moved the Supreme Court for safe recovery of missing persons in General (r) Musharraf’s rule and had strongly criticised the interior ministry for its failure to locate the missing persons, but today when his own party was ruling the country, he had adopted silence over the issue.

Shamsun Nisa, 60, remembers her only son Attiqur Rehman, who she (allegedly) said was picked up by the intelligence agencies from his hometown Abbottabad on the day he was to get married in June 2004.

The aged woman told Daily Times that she believed that the new government would get her son released from the lock-up of secret agencies. She said that eight months have passed but the democratic government showed no interest in release of missing persons from secret agencies’ custody.

Two women Gulmina and Rahmat Bibi of Peshawar, whose habeas corpus petition was disposed of by the Peshawar High Court after the police and intelligence agencies showed ignorance about whereabouts of their sons Mohammad Sharif and Raj Wali missing for the last four months, told Daily Times that their sons were neither Taliban nor terrorists but the intelligence agencies picked them up on suspicion of terrorism and they were missing to date.

On September 20, 2007, intelligence agencies allegedly raided the office of former general secretary of Peshawar High Court Bar Association (PHCBA) Ishtiaq Ibrahim and picked up his clients Dalil, son of Said Ghareeb, and Agha Gul, son of Khiali, residents of Afghanistan and presently living in Lahore, who had come to the office for consulting the lawyer in their case.

Aslam Khan, a family member of these missing persons, told Daily Times that they had tried time and again to know their whereabouts but to no avail.

Anchorperson of ‘Defence of Human Rights’ and spokesperson of families of missing persons, Amina Janjua, whose husband Masood Janjua has been missing since May 2005, also has grave concern over disappearance of her husband and other missing persons who have disappeared since years.

dailytimes.com.pk

Congressman seeks Pakistan’s help in tracing Masood Janjua

By Mumtaz Alvi

ISLAMABAD: A US congressman has sought help of the Pakistan Embassy in the US to locate Masood Ahmad Janjua, who is missing since July 2005.

Earl Blumenauer wrote a letter to the Pakistani Ambassador Husain Haqqani on October 22, requesting him to assist him locate the missing Pakistani national. “At the request of my constituent, Saba Ahmad, I am attempting to locate the whereabouts of a Pakistani citizen, Masood Ahmad Janjua. Any assistance the embassy can provide toward this end would be welcomed,” the American legislator maintained.

The congressman said that Janjua went missing in July 2005, and it was thought that he had been detained in Rawalpindi. He added there were reports from earlier this year about his presence in Chaklala. “I am further informed that Janjua’s father Lieutenant Colonel Raja Ali Muhammad served in the Pakistan Army for 25 years,” Earl Blumenauer said.

He wrote the letter weeks after Masood’s spouse Amina was not permitted to visit the United States during her tour of Europe, which was sponsored by the Amnesty International. She is the chairperson of the Defence of Human Rights aimed at recovering more than 500 missing persons.

thenews.com.pk

IHC resumes Aafia extradition case today

Staff Report

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) will resume the hearing of a petition concerning the extradition of Dr Aafia Siddiqui to the United States today (Wednesday).

At the last hearing, the court had directed the Foreign Affairs Ministry to submit a detailed reply until October 15 about the extradition, and steps taken to bring her back to Pakistan.

Petitioner Barrister M Javed Iqbal Jafferi had submitted that the ministry had failed to implement court orders. He said Dr Aafia was abducted from Karachi in April 2003 and taken to the US against her will. Therefore, he added, she should be brought back to Pakistan to face trial in her country.

Meanwhile, the Defence of Human Rights, an NGO working for release of missing persons, has requested the members of civil society and people to attend today’s hearing at the IHC.

dailytimes.com.pk

US revokes visa for Amina Janjua

WASHINGTON: The United States has revoked the travel visa of a Pakistani human rights defender ahead of her trip to Washington, human rights group Amnesty International said Saturday.

Amina Janjua, founder of Defence of Human Rights, was scheduled to highlight the plight of hundreds of missing compatriots allegedly rounded up as part of the ‘war on terror’. She was about to board a flight from Geneva to Washington on Saturday when she was informed by a US diplomat over telephone that the visa issued to her had been cancelled, an Amnesty official said.

“It is extremely unfortunate that the US revoked her visa,” Amnesty’s Washington-based Asia-Pacific director for advocacy T Kumar told AFP. “We hope they will reconsider the decision,” said Kumar, who was also informed by the US diplomat about the visa’s cancellation.

Amnesty had arranged Janjua’s week-long US trip and had confirmed her meetings with senior State Department officials and congressional staff, Kumar said.

US officials were not immediately available for comment. afp