Will seek asylum, says another Baloch leader

Hyrbyair Marri  

A number of Baloch activists and leaders staying in Europe could approach India to seek asylum if the host countries tried to deport them to Pakistan, leader of the Free Balochistan Movement, Hyrbyair Marri has said.

Mr. Marri said he could also seek asylum in India like Baloch Republican Party leader Brahumdagh Bugti, if his present host, U.K., turned hostile in future. “I have been staying in Britain for some time but Britain is increasingly coming under the influence of Pakistan, especially on the issue of Balochistan. I will seek asylum from India or the U.S. or some other reasonable country that is not under Pakistani influence, if the U.K. plans to hand me over to Pakistan or creates difficulties before me,” Mr. Marri told an Urdu media outlet.

Mr. Marri is the second major Baloch leader after Mr. Bugti to declare his intention to seek asylum in India. In 2015, Free Balochistan Movement reached out to India to seek support and appointed a Baloch residing in Delhi as its representative. Pakistan has accused Mr. Marri and Mr. Bugti of leading insurgency movements in Balochistan that they both refute. Mr. Marri said India should consider providing educational opportunities for Baloch activists as many of them have been denied education in Pakistan due to their political leanings. “We are particularly concerned about those Baloch brothers who have been denied asylum by various European countries. We are trying so that they receive asylum in India or some other country,” he said.

‘Not secessionism’

Mr. Marri said seeking of asylum does not amount to Baloch secessionism as Balochistan has been a free land even before Pakistan was created in 1947. Mr. Marri’s declaration comes days after Mr. Bugti revealed his negotiation with Indian diplomats on seeking asylum in India. Mr. Bugti and Mr. Marri are representatives of two of the biggest clans in the Baloch society.

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