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Balochistan party boycotts Pakistan National Assembly over civilian killings by security forces

ANI | Updated: Apr 19, 2022 23:03 IST

Quetta [Balochistan], April 19 (ANI): In an embarrassement to newly-formed coalition government under Shehbaz Sharif government in Pakistan, the Balochistan National Party-Mengal (BNP-M) boycotted the National Assembly proceedings on Monday over the killings of civilians by security forces in their province.
"On April 16, a heart-wrenching incident happened at Chagai when the security forces opened fire on unarmed and oppressed Baloch people in which six persons were martyred and many others injured. As usual, the past attitude has not been abandoned. Today (Monday) again, the peaceful innocent Baloch protesters were fired upon resulting in more killings," leader of BNP-M Agha Hasan Baloch said in the House, reported Dawn.
Pakistani forces allegedly had forced several drivers from the ethnic minority areas of Balochistan to abandon their vehicles and march through the desert to their homes in the Chagai district near the border with Afghanistan, local media reported.

The BNP-M member regretted that the Baloch people had been the victim of extrajudicial killings since 1947 and this was happening even today.
"Why have the security forces been given too many powers? We condemn it and stage a walkout. How can we stay in the government in these conditions?" Baloch said before leaving the house with other party members.
In the absence of PM Sharif from the house, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Khawaja Asif responded to the protesting BNP-M lawmakers, stating that the Balochistan issue had been there since the 1960s. He admitted that excesses had been committed with the people of Balochistan and agreements with them were violated.
The PML-N leader said "terrorism" was still there in Balochistan where army officers and personnel were being attacked and martyred. He said all the institutions needed to work together to resolve the issue, Dawn reported.
The protest by the BNP-M legislators, which is an ally of the current government has further revealed the cracks in the PML-N coalition which ousted the Imran Khan-led Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government earlier this month. (ANI)