The Baloch have an excellent chance to present their cases in two major European countries, if the feudal lords show vision and political acumen, two developments of the past week show. These countries are Switzerland, where the authorities Thursday deported Mehran Marri, who has been visiting Geneva since March 2001 to plead the case of Balochistan, putting him under a lifetime ban from visiting Switzerland, and London where the Transport for London (TfL) Wednesday ordered the removal of free Balochistan ads from 100 double-decker buses. The multi-phased ad campaign was launched by former senator Javed Mengal, head of the World Baloch Organization (WBO).
First, let us take a look at Mehran Marri case. The main reason cited by the Swiss for detaining and then deporting Mehran Marri from Zurich airport Thursday, while he was en route to Geneva to attend a Baloch unity meeting, should send alarm bells ringing for any Baloch freedom leader, specially his brother in law Brahumdagh Bugti. Bugti had called the unity meeting November 18 in Geneva that was aborted by Marri’s deportation. Others expected at the meeting were Marri’s elder brother Hyrbyair Marri, their brother-in-law Javed Mengal, Bugti’s brother-in-law Sardar Bakhtyar Domki and Hammal Haider, leader of the Baloch National Movement.
Paranoid state of Pakistan got mad with Mehran Marri after his Baluchistan House launched a “Free Baluchistan” ad campaign in Geneva in September while the United Nations Human Rights Council was in session. “Swiss Ambassador-designate Thomas Kolly got an earful after being summoned to the Foreign Office by Additional Secretary for Europe Zaheer Janjua on Monday over the public display of anti-Pakistan posters and ‘an insidious paid campaign against Pakistan’, by a group in Switzerland,” The Express Tribune reported two months ago. The scolding to the Swiss ambassador seemed to have worked for the Deep State in Pakistan. Action against Mehran Marri proves that the Swiss bought Pakistan army and ISI narrative that he heads the United Baloch Army (UBA), a splinter group of the Balochistan Liberation Army.
The Swiss charge-sheet Thursday seen by Murtaza Shah, reporter for The News International who is also a personal friend of Marri–though many say reporters are nobody’s friend, but just want to get the news out– is indeed a cause for grave concern for the Baloch Diaspora. The Swiss charge-sheet described Mehran Marri “a Pakistani national of Great Britain” associated with militant groups. Marri vehemently denies the charge he heads the militant UBA, but insider Baloch sources say his late father Nawab Khair Bakhsh Marri did indeed name his favorite son as the UBA chief in addition to the position of the new “nawab” or chieftain of the Marri tribe. At the time, his elder brother, London-based Hyrbyair Marri accused his father of nepotism and the bad blood that ensued between the two brothers led to the killing of nearly four dozen best Marri fighters, Marri tribal sources told this writer. Some local commanders of the UBA, with decades of experience behind them, were also unhappy over Nawab Marri decision.
The Swiss charge should cause extreme concern to Brahumdagh Bugti, president of the Baloch Republican Party. Not only have the Swiss brought the Pakistan story that Mehran Marri heads the UBA, the charge-sheet further accepted the Pakistan allegation and claimed that the UBA “collaborated with the terrorist movement Balochistan Republican Army (BRA) under Brahmadagh Bugti.” The BRA describes itself as “a Baloch secessionist armed organisation formed in 2006 fighting against enforced occupation of Balochistan and for its independence.” The charge-sheet pointed out that Mehran Marri was married to Bugti’s sister and accused Marri of being in close contact with Bugti. “If Marri was able to enter Switzerland to work with Brahamdagh Bugti and coordinate terrorist operations, it could jeopardize the internal security of the country,” the charge-sheet said. Unfazed by the Swiss charges against Brahumdagh Bugti, far away in Balochistan, the BRA was continuing its actions. One tweet Saturday reads, “Besides BRA fighters have executed an agent of occupying state namely Waseem in Sechi Bazar after investigation.” Bugti has failed to obtain Swiss asylum specifically because Pakistan has charged him of being the chief the BRA; deportation of Marri Thursday showed the Swiss do believe Bugti is in fact the BRA chief. Bugti needs to do more to convince the Swiss authorities he has no association with the BRA, rather than just issuing a Press statement.
Bugti, Marri and Mir Javed Mengal, son of former chief minister Sardar Ataullah Mengal and elder brother of another former chief minister, Sardar Ataullah Mengal, apparently have the resources to hire top notch lawyers to legally fight the case for Balochistan in Switzerland and the United Kingdom as they are victims, not perpetrators of terror. All three have lost a sibling to Pakistan army and ISI atrocities — Javed Mengal’s brother Asadullah Mengal was the first Baloch to be killed as a victim of enforced disappearances way back in 1974 (Asadullah Mengal was abducted from a house that this scribe’s uncle had gifted to ousted chief minister Sardar Ataullah Mengal in Gulshan-i-Iqbal, Karachi), Bugti’s sister Zamur Domki was one of the first females to be killed execution style by the Pakistan secret services, and Mehran Marri’s elder brother Mir Balach Marri was killed by the Pakistani forces. As many as 20,000 Baloch have lost their lives as Pakistan continues with its slow motion genocide in Balochistan, while at least 8,000 Baloch are victims of enforced disappearances facing the most inhumane torture in Hitler-style dungeons.
A day before the Swiss deported Marri, Pakistan succeeded in shooting down the Free Balochistan ads on double-decker buses in London. In the case of UK, their ambassador Thomas Drew was summoned to the Foreign Office and also met army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa on November 3 for the Pakistani scolding. The WBO’s chief Mir Javed Mengal is in a unique position to sue the Transport for London for heavy damages as he was personally a victim of Pakistan state terrorism. However, Javed Mengal’s eldest son Noordin Mengal is said to be as frugal as former presidential candidate Mitt Romney and it is unclear if the family will sue TfL as it will entail lawyers’ fees.
It is an irony that the Pakistan’s diabolical army and ISI, whose hands are red with the blood of thousands of Baloch, Afghans and Kashmiris, have turned around to blame these leaders who are victims of state terrorism of being terrorists. But the weakness of Baloch feudal lords is they want to be surrounded by yes-men who love lifting their suitcases. These feudal lords hate those who tell them their weaknesses to their face, including this writer.
The developments in Switzerland and U.K. also show two states most affected by Pakistan terrorism, Afghanistan and India, are failing the Baloch royally. Otherwise, their ambassadors might have put their foot down.