Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Interim Government Frees Detained Women and Children Amid Baloch Protest Crackdown

In a significant development, the interim government, on Thursday, announced the release of all women and children detained during the recent police crackdown on Baloch protesters. Privatisation Minister Fawad Hasan Fawad conveyed this decision during a press conference in Islamabad, flanked by Information Minister Murtaza Solangi and Jamal Shah.

"At the prime minister's direction, a decision was made to release all women and children without exception. Additionally, all identified men have also been freed," declared Fawad Hasan Fawad.

The Islamabad police had detained a considerable number of Baloch men and women during a demonstration protesting against enforced disappearances and extrajudicial killings.

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Videos circulating on social media depicted security forces employing water cannons and tear gas on the protesters, forcefully detaining Baloch individuals, and using batons against them. Additionally, the police dismantled protest camps and loudspeaker setups outside the National Press Club.

In response to the public outcry, the caretaker government swiftly formed a negotiation team, led by Solangi, Fawad, and Jamal Shah, to engage with the families of the protesters.

Addressing the situation, Fawad shed light on a clash between the police and protesters. He mentioned that Islamabad Police Chief Akbar Nasir Khan presented facts before the Islamabad High Court (IHC), asserting that the protesters were already present and not the instigators of the chaos.

Fawad also pointed out the presence of individuals who had covered their faces and appeared prepared for certain actions.

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The incident unfolded as a women-led march from Turbat, initiated on Dec 6 following the alleged extrajudicial killing of a Baloch youth, reached Islamabad. However, police measures, including the blockage of city entrances and major routes leading to the National Press Club, added tension to the situation.

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Raheel J.M
Raheel J.M
Raheel, a Karachi-based reporter, is at the forefront of political journalism, providing insightful coverage that transcends the bustling landscape of Pakistan's political sphere. With an unwavering commitment to delivering accurate and comprehensive news, Raheel's work is marked by a keen understanding of the intricate dynamics shaping the political landscape.
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