Skip to main content

BALOCHISTAN: International dimensions


Download

BRIEFING PAPER
Number 6106,
2 January 2018
*Balochistan: Pakistan's forgotten conflict*

House of Commons UK
〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰〰
International dimensions

Although from time to time it has raised concerns relating to human rights issues and called for action to address the causes of instability in the province, successive US Administrations have taken the view that Balochistan is an internal security matter for Pakistan.

The US has consistently provided support for Pakistan’s counterterrorism efforts, despite sometimes feeling that its partner is not doing as much as it could do to tackle the jihadi armed groups on its territory – including the Afghan Taliban, many of whose leaders are based in Quetta, the provincial capital of Balochistan. Since taking office, US President Donald Trump has often been critical of Pakistan’s counterterrorism performance; he isthreatening to significantly reduce funding to the country.

US security personnel have in the past been based in Balochistan, including at Shamsi base, southwest of Quetta, from where drone attacks targeting Afghan Taliban figures in Afghanistan were reportedly launched between 2004 and 2011. This presence was ended in the wake of the killing by US forces of Osama bin Laden in Pakistan without the prior consent of the Pakistani government . To our knowledge, no US security personnel are currently based in the province.

There are US concerns that Gwadar, which is strategically located at the head of the Straits of Hormuz, might be used by the Chinese as naval base in future. It is currently used by the Pakistani navy.

The UK’s stance on Balochistan has been similar to that of the US. Between 2009 and 2011 UK personnel provided counterinsurgency training for Pakistan’s Frontier Corps at a facility in Balochistan. However, this also came to an end following the killing of Osama bin Laden. At the time the MOD told the Guardian the training teams were ready to redeploy at the first possible opportunity”. But there is no indication that this training ever resumed.

So far China has viewed insurgency in Balochistan as very much a security issue – the Pakistani army, which has allocated thousands of soldiers to defend CPEC projects, comes under relatively little pressure from it to explore political solutions.

India has regularly expressed concern about human rights abuses in Balochistan, including at the UN. However, some doubt whether this reflects a genuine concern on its part, arguing that India largely uses Balochistan to counter Pakistan’s criticisms on the issue ofKashmir. There are fears that Balochistan has become an additional site of proxy conflict between India and Pakistan.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Balochistan to establish first medical university

https://www.dawn.com/news/1366135

The Newspaper's Staff CorrespondentOctober 25, 2017QUETTA: The provincial cabinet on Tuesday approved the draft for establishing a medical university in Balochistan.Health minister Mir Rehmat Saleh Baloch made the announcement while speaking at a press conference after a cabinet meeting.“The cabinet has approved the draft of the medical university which would be presented in the current session of the Balochistan Assembly,” he said, adding with the assembly’s approval the Bolan Medical College would be converted into a medical university.Published in Dawn, October 25th, 2017

5 Shia Hazara community members gunned down in Pakistan

http://m.hindustantimes.com/world-news/5-shia-hazara-community-members-gunned-down-in-pakistan/story-CHWR4lYByRHzf2KjHjMloI.html



Five members of the minority Shia Hazara community, including two women, were killed on Sunday in an attack by unidentified gunmen in Pakistan’s restive Balochistan province.This is not the first time that members of the Hazara community have been targeted in Quetta and other parts of Balochistan.(Reuters File Photo)Updated: Sep 11, 2017 00:20 ISTBy Press Trust of India, Press Trust of India, KarachiFive members of the minority Shia Hazara community, including two women, were killed on Sunday in an attack by unidentified gunmen in Pakistan’s restive Balochistan province.The gunmen targeted a car in Kuchluck area of Quetta while it was coming from the Chaman border crossing area, police said.The firing took place when the travellers had stopped at a filling station to refuel their vehicle. Five people of the Shia Hazara community, including two women, died in …

China’s 'Digital Silk Road': Pitfalls Among High Hopes

https://thediplomat.com/2017/11/chinas-digital-silk-road-pitfalls-among-high-hopes/


Will information and communication technologies help China realize its Digital Silk Road?By Wenyuan WuNovember 03, 2017In his speech at the opening ceremony of China’s 19th Party Congress, President Xi Jinping depicted China as a model of scientific and harmonious development for developing nations. Xi’s China wants to engage the world through commerce but also through environmental protection and technological advancement. This includes Beijing’s efforts to fight climate change with information and communication technologies (ICTs) that it plans to export along its “One Belt One Road” initiative (OBOR). Xi may have ambitious plans, but could China be throwing up obstacles in its own way?In his speech, the Chinese president emphasized the need to modernize the country’s environmental protections. The Chinese state is taking an “ecological civilization” approach to development and diplomacy, with a natio…