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Baloch Leader Accuses Pakistan Army Of Ignoring Balochistan Amid Covid-19 Crisis

EurAsian Times gets you a report from India’s leading media organization – ANI, which has accused the Pakistan Army of spreading coronavirus infections to expand its so-called occupation in Balochistan.

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“We believe that the Pakistan Army is using coronavirus pandemic to extend its occupation over Balochistan while proceeding with its barbarities and genocide of the Baloch people,” Allah Nizar Baloch, the leader of Balochistan Liberation Front (BLF), was quoted as saying by Sangar Publication, a mouthpiece of the movement.

Allah Nizar Baloch said that the disaster of quarantine centre in Taftan (Pakistan-Iran border town) which is run by Pakistan Army “is a clear example”.  The Taftan camp has ben lambasted by people quarantined who have stated that the camp lacks proper medical and isolation facilities and has thus become the hotbed of Covid-19.

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At least 57 per cent of all people who have tested positive for coronavirus in Pakistan passed through the camp at some stage, according to government data cited by Al Jazeera, says the ANI report.

Earlier, as Pakistan media reported, hundreds of pilgrims from Iran trapped in coronavirus quarantine camps at Taftan lacked medical care, had poor facilities which could have helped the virus to spread, unchecked.

Speaking to AFP, the occupants of Taftan camp said the facility lacks running water or flushable toilets, with detainees only able to wash every few days. “I have been using the same mask for over seven days now,” one quarantined pilgrim at Taftan, who asked not to be named, said in a phone interview on Tuesday. “If I didn’t have the virus when I first got here, I wouldn’t be surprised to find out that I have it now.”

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The total confirmed cases of coronavirus in Pakistan as on Saturday morning, IST, has reached 1363 with 11 deaths and 23 cases of recovery. The total cases in Balochistan so far is 133.

Coming back to accusations of the Baloch leader – “In case if this disease spreads across Balochistan, it would be uncontrollable. Balochistan, which lacks basic amenities of life including healthcare and the people of Balochistan, who in this modern age, are already dying from curable diseases like malaria, would be affected irrecoverably,” Nizar said.

“For the last seventy years, the occupying forces have plundered the resources of rich Balochistan by selling them for a pittance. In return, we have got poverty and humiliation from Pakistan,” he added. Disclosing further upon the condition of health amenities in the region, the BLF leader stated that there are only four ventilators in the entire Balochistan which is the basic requirement to treat patients infected by coronavirus.

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In Balochistan, only Sheik Zayad Hospital has the facility of isolation rooms which are not more than a dozen. Amid such a situation, self-imposed precautions are the only way to avoid contraction for the oppressed people, he stressed.”The majority of our population dwells in villages and hillsides and their lives mostly depend on agriculture and livestock. Amid the growing cases of coronavirus, they should either opt to stay at home or try to limit their movements and do not expect and wait for help from the state of Pakistan,” Nizar noted.

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“I appeal to the Baloch people that they should understand the machinations of Pakistan and prefer to stay in their homes and rely on preventive measures,” the BLF leader further stated. Balochistan has so far reported 131 cases, as per data compiled by Geo News.

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