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PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif. — Photo by AFP

LAHORE: Pakistan Muslim League - Nawaz (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif on Tuesday said that the issue of Balochistan was crucial and that those who had gone missing from the province were Pakistani citizens and it was vital to raise one's voice for them, DawnNews reported.

Speaking to media representatives in Lahore after condoling former Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) president and human rights activist Asma Jahangir over her mother’s demise, the PML-N chief said the recovery of the missing was the government's responsibility, adding that, the government should have taken significant steps to resolve the issue during the past four years.

Sharif said the government should remove the hurdles in the way of holding free and fair elections in the restive province, adding that, if the Frontier Corps (FC) were being considered an impediment, they should also be withdrawn from Balochistan.

He said it was a key demand of the Baloch leadership that the army and the FC be called back from the restive province.

The PML-N leader feared that if the government did not act on the issue soon enough, it may eventually run out of time to salvage the situation.

Sharif further said that he was in favour of the formation of a grand alliance to resolve the Balochistan issue.

On the occasion, Jahangir said it was the first time that a Punjabi leader had spoken out so strongly for the Baloch.

Pakistan’s southwestern Balochistan province, which borders Iran and Afghanistan, has been wracked by an insurgency waged by ethnic Baloch tribes seeking more political rights and a greater share of profits from the region’s natural resources.

Hundreds of people have died in violence ripping through the province since the insurgency flared in late 2004.

Scores of people are also alleged to have gone missing in the vast, sparsely populated province since then and their families have accused intelligence agencies of carrying out the abductions.

The region has also been hit by attacks blamed on Taliban militants.

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Comments are closed.

Comments (10)

Ahmer
October 2, 2012 6:17 pm
The six point formula is incomplete without any mention of the rights of the settlers from onther provinces, many of them born in Balochistan.
Pro Truth
October 2, 2012 10:48 am
..and you Nawaz woke up just now after 10 long years to raise this voice!
Pro Truth
October 2, 2012 2:39 pm
I meant, he is not serious just playing cheap politics! Everyone in Pakistan government and opposition should be united to resolve all issues faced by people of Balochistan!
SAEED KHAN
October 2, 2012 11:14 am
IT IS NEVER TOO LATE
hjk
October 2, 2012 2:08 pm
Amazing that no one notices that blatent foreign meddling in Balochistan. No one is asking to hang the terrorists and block their supplies coming in from Afghanistan. It is about time that the people of Balochistan to stand up against the sardars who have given them nothing but grief in the last 65 years. 80% of Patriotic and caring leaders in Balochistan are not in power. Balochistan is and will always remain the Heart of Pakistan InshAllah!
Kashif
October 2, 2012 8:46 pm
I am happy to see Nawaz Sharif coming forward and voice for Balochistan. Its time that all national parties should sit together and find a solution of Balochistan before its too late. Country can recover from economic crisis & could wait further for elections but Balochistan should be high priority....and if for some reason these parties don't take it seriously then I consider them equally responsible as Army.
Abid
October 3, 2012 3:11 am
its appreciable for Mia Sahib to eventually realizes the gravity of the issue in Balochistan and hope that he can take a timely action. A gentlemen, who had seen East Pakistan slip away says the situation prevailing in Balochistan is exactly what he had seen in the then East Pakistan. A humble advise: Delegations from Islamabad to Balochistan meet the Parliamentarians to discuss and resolve the Balochistan issue. They are quite wrong here as most of the Parliamentarians either selected or elected are not trusted by the majority as individuals who are trusted should be approached irrespective of it they are holding any public office or not. The famous word "DO MORE" is quite relevant here and all must act before its too late. Can the public representatives leash the invincible in Balochistan is yet to be seen!
Munir from Sacramento usa
October 2, 2012 6:32 pm
Nawaz Sharif has raised his voice on Balochistan issue many times.All political parties should set aside their differences and support him in this national cause.It is encouraging that even the aggrieved Baloch leaders do have confidence in Mr Sharif whose love for Pakistan exceles his love for his own party or even own self
SAEED KHAN
October 2, 2012 11:13 am
YES EVERY PAKISTANI AT HOME OR ABROAD SHOULD VOICE FOR BALOCHISTAN AND GOVERNMENT SHOULD TAKE IMMEDIATE STEPS TO FOLLOW THE SIX POINTS OF AKHTAR MANGAL BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE.WILL THE WHOLE CABINET PLEASE WAKE UP
Shahid
October 2, 2012 3:03 pm
there should be no doubt in anybody's mind that now is the last opportunity to act otherwise Baluchistan and its people will no longer stay with the main land.
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