Pakistan’s largest province, Balochistan, has become “a war zone”, says official

Islamabad, October 28: The Balo­chistan government has demanded sweeping powers to deal with acts of terror, saying Pakistan’s largest province has become “a war zone”.

“The provincial administration has no legal powers in Balochistan that has become a war zone,” Home Secretary Mohammad Akbar told a meeting of the Senate’s Functional Committee on Human Rights on Thursday.

The Dawn on Friday quoted Akbar as saying that Balochistan required the pre-1958 powers under the Frontier Crimes Regulations to curb crimes and prevent acts of terror in the province.

Committee members, especially Senator Jehanzeb Jamaldini of the Balochistan National Party-Mengal, criticized both the federal and provincial governments for failing to stop acts of terror.

Jamaldini lost his son in an August 8 suicide attack on Quetta’s Civil Hospital that claimed the lives of more than 70 people, including lawyers.

The senators said they wanted know who had powers in Balochistan to restore stability there.

Akbar said: “Balochistan has become a cocktail of insurgencies, religious extremism and other criminal activities. We cannot hide that the system has failed in Balochistan.” IANS

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