Members of the Pashtun community gathered on July 10 at the Broken Chair in Geneva to demand an investigation into the human rights violation committed against them by the Pakistan Government.
The protestors also demanded the release of their leader, who was arrested in January this year by Pakistan. The leading figure of the Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement (PTM), freedom fighter Manzoor Pashteen, is one of the victims who was arrested by the Pakistan police on January 27 this year for speaking against the Pakistan Army.
“Reluctant to address the issues of the Pashtuns, the Pakistani government and the country’s Army has unabatedly continued atrocities against the ethnic minority group,” the protestors said.
Life of Pashtun people on Pakistani grounds has never been an easy affair. More than 70 thousand Pashtuns have been killed in past 16 years while many more have been forcefully disappeared.
“With media totally under control and political parties re-engineered in Pakistan, the authorities continue genocide of Pashtuns, misleading the international community through its lies and deceits. Apart from this, military atrocities, human rights violations and Pakistani state sponsored terrorism continues unabated against the Pashtuns,” said the protestors.
On the pretext of war on terror, the Pakistani army has carried out a number of military incursions across the Pashtun belt and claimed elimination of terrorist. The plight of Pashtuns runs deep in the heart of the community and is deep rooted in a series of unfortunate historical events that have led to the discrimination of one of the largest ethnic minority group in Pakistan.
Pakistan’s policies have led to an influx of foreign radicals, who have created a lawless environment in which the local people have suffered immeasurably. Pakistan’s misguided military operations have laid waste to the local economy, resulting in internal displacement of the tribal people and rising crime and drug abuse.
“Pakistan must realize now that the international community is aware of the plight of the Pashtun people committed by the Pakistani government and the Army, hence, it must begin providing and honoring the fundamental human rights of the innocent Pashtuns,” the protestors said.