February 28, 2012

Time to recognise independent Balochistan: US Congressman

Last Updated: Wednesday, February 29, 2012, 00:03

Washington: A top American lawmaker has underlined the need for the US to support the cause of independent Balochistan in a bid to combat Taliban and al Qaeda terrorists.

"Perhaps it is time to recognize an independent Balochistan, where we'd have a friend who would not keep supplying the enemy of America, those people train and prepare for 9/11 to kill as many thousands of Americans as they could," said Texas Congressman Louie Gohmert.

"We don't want to leave Afghanistan in the hands of the Taliban and all of the American life and treasure be for nothing. But there is an easy answer," Gohmert said in his remarks on the floor of the US House of Representatives.

"We leave, but we empower the enemy of our enemy, the Northern Alliance and the Baluch people. Let them take care of their own area. Let them prevent the Taliban from taking over. Let them prevent Pakistan from becoming such a focused enemy as they have unabated. Let them worry," he said.

Gohmert is one of the two Co-sponsors of the Congressional resolution in the House of Representatives introduced by the Congressman Dana Rohrabacher.

The non-binding resolution calls for self-determination in Balochistan.

The resolution, so far has failed to garner additional support from the lawmakers, but experts note that it has added to the strain in US-Pak relationship.

Pakistan has strongly objected to such a resolution and has termed it as interference in the internal affairs of the country.

The US government has said that it respects the territorial integrity of Pakistan, but has expressed concern over the human rights violations in Balochistan.

In his remarks, Gohmert said that after Partition of India, the arbitrary lines that were drawn put Balochistan into Pakistan.

"This used to be a Baluch area. As a recent Pakistan Daily News editorial pointed out, most of Pakistan's natural resources come from this area," the lawmaker said.

He said he has been told that the Taliban getting their support from southern Pakistan and are coming through the Baluch area.

He said the Baloch don't want that as they "want to be our friends". Blaming Islamabad, he said the Baloch "have been terrorized by the Pakistani Government for decades".


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