Fri, 05 Mar 2021

Karachi [Pakistan], January 24 (ANI): Pakistani authorities have shut down all communication systems in Balochistan's Kech area and closed all entry points to Tump, the hometown of slain human rights activist Karima Baloch.

"Pakistani authorities shutdown all communication systems in Kech, Balochistan. All entryways to Tump, Karima Baloch's hometown, are closed. We don't know what Pakistan's security forces are doing to Karima's body and her family who went to receive the body," said Lateef Johar Baloch, an activist, in a tweet.

Karima, a prominent Baloch activist who died in Canada in December last year, was slated to get buried on January 25, Balochwarna reported. However, before the corpse could be transported from Karachi to Balochistan, Pakistani authorities took Karima's body along with her family from the airport, to an "unknown location."Sameer Mehrab, brother of slain human rights activist Karima Baloch, lashed out at Pakistani authorities on Sunday after the body of his sister was forcefully taken away while it was being escorted to her hometown in Tump, Balochistan.

"Previously we thought only living Baloch are prone to abductions. Here, this is a new law. Even a Baloch dead woman is not spared from abduction by Pakistan," Sameer tweeted.

In December 2020, Karima was found dead a day she went missing in Toronto. The activist's death sparked protests across Europe and North America as the Baloch diaspora took to the streets in Toronto, Berlin and Netherlands calling on the Canadian government to investigate.

Karima had campaigned vigorously against the disappearances and human rights violations in the troubled Balochistan province of Pakistan. Requesting the United Nations to intervene, Baloch Human Rights Council in a letter had said Pakistan has "responded violently to the genuine demands of the Baloch people".

Recently Pakistan affairs expert Tarek Fatah, and scholar Burzine Waghmar had slammed the crackdown on dissent in Balochistan and urged the Canadian Government to reconsider diplomatic relations with Pakistan.

Speaking to a Canadian News outlet recently, Waghmar said that there has been a systematic campaign by the Pakistani state elements to "liquidate any and every Baloch voice.""We have seen nothing official come out of Ottawa on this count. Not even the Pakistani High Commissioner in Ottawa has been called into the foreign ministry for an explication on this. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence," he had said.

Fatah, who is also leading the Friends For Karima Baloch committee, called for Karima's death to not be considered a suicide stating that "there is no reason to" do so. "There was no reason for her to commit suicide. She had her whole life ahead of her," he had said. (ANI)

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