Relatives of missing persons are protesting for recovery of their loved-ones during demonstration at commissioner office in Quetta on Thursday. – Photo by PPI

QUETTA: The Commander of the Army’s Southern Command, Lt-Gen Javed Zia, condemned on Thursday the killing of missing people and dumping of their bodies in different areas of the province and said this could have an adverse effect on the integrity of the country and cause separation of Balochistan.

But, he dispelled a perception that the army, FC or any other agency was involved in such killings and said that it was not the policy of the army leadership. Gen Javed Zia was talking to local editors and senior journalists at the Quetta Club.

Inspector General of Frontier Corps Major General Obaidullah Khan, GOC 33 Division Major General Tariq Javed and other senior military officers were present on the occasion.

“Army considers the killing of missing people an abhorrent act,” Gen Javed Zia said, adding that the army realised that it was a sensitive and serious issue and would create hatred in the country, particularly among women who received bodies of their sons, brothers and husbands.

He said that some elements who did not believe in courts and the supremacy of law might be involved in such killings. He said that even if someone was involved in a crime he should not be treated in this manner.

Gen Javed Zia expressed concern and said that some Baloch youths had burnt the national flag just for the sake of money or carried out subversive activities. As a result, they were hit by patriotic elements.

He said the army was trying to restore confidence of the people who were involved in the burning of national flag so that they hoisted the flag with respect.

He said the army had no objection to a dialogue with Baloch nationalist leaders living in Pakistan or abroad,  adding that the army wanted to resolve the issue through talks.

He said efforts were being made at some level to resolve the issue and it was also the responsibility of the media to play its role in guiding the army in this regard.

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