QUETTA: A strike was observed along the Makran coastal belt, Mastung, Kalat and Kharan districts on Thursday in response to a call of the Baloch National Front (BNF) to condemn the killing of `innocent’ people in Mashkay by security forces.

The BNP-Mengal, Baloch Salvation Front, Baloch Warna Movement and Baloch National Movement said in separate statements that violence would never suppress the struggle of Baloch people for their political and national rights.

All major trading centres and shops remained closed on Thursday in the district headquarters of Mastung, Kalat, Awaran, Kharan, Panjgur and Turbat in protest against indiscriminate firing allegedly by security forces in Mashkay in which several people, including women and children, lost their lives.

The BNF in a statement thanked people for observing the successful strike.

Meanwhile, Balochistan National Party-Mengal chief Sardar Akhtar Mengal and spokesmen for the Baloch Salvation Front, Baloch National Movement and Baloch Warna Movement criticised the government and security forces’ action.

They said that violence in Mashkay targeting women and children in the name of search operation was a violation of human rights.

“Use of state machinery against the oppressed people to force them to abandon their struggle for national rights would never be successful,” they said.

Akhtar Mengal alleged that the so-called nationalist government in Balochistan had decided to annihilate Baloch people through such operations and the killing of the brother and nephews of Dr Allah Nazar of the Baloch Liberation Front in Mashkay by security forces should be condemned.

The BSF, BNM and BWM urged human rights organisations and the international community to take notice of killings in Mashkay and dispatch a team to investigate violation of human rights.

Published in Dawn, July 3rd, 2015

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