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Open Letter to the Pakistan Prime Minister on the killing of human rights defender Siddique Eido

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12 May 2011

His Excellency Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani

Prime Minister of Pakistan
Prime Minister House
Islamabad, Pakistan
Tel no: + 92 519213562

Dear Rt. Hon’ble Prime Minister Prime Minister Gilani,

We, the undersigned non-governmental organizations and people’s movements from Asia, strongly condemn the disappearance and brutal killing of Mr. Siddique Eido. Mr. Eido was a Pakistani journalist and an activist of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) in Balochistan province. His body was found on 28 April 2011 in Ormara, Balochistan, together with the body of Mr. Yousaf Nazar, a member of a student organization. Both men were shot in the head and their bodies bore torture marks.

Mr. Eido and Mr. Nazar had been missing since 21 December 2010 after being abducted by men in state security forces uniform. According to HRCP, the vehicles used by the abductors were similar to those used by state security forces. At the time of their disappearance, four policemen accompanied Mr. Eido and Mr. Nazar. HRCP had also challenged Mr. Eido’s disappearance in the Supreme Court. Yet no action was taken to publicly identify or prosecute the abductors.

We believe that Mr. Eido’s killing is linked to his work as a human rights defender highlighting incidents of enforced disappearances and other human rights violations. Mr. Eido is the second human rights defender associated with HRCP to be murdered in 2011, after Mr. Naeem Sabir, HRCP coordinator in Khuzdar district, was shot dead on 1 March 2011. These killings highlight the grave threats that human rights defenders face in Pakistan in general, and in Balochistan in particular.

We believe that the alleged involvement of state agents in disappearances and extra-judicial killings of human rights defenders in Balochistan is part of a wider context of violence against the citizens of Pakistan. We note with concern that the Government of Pakistan does not provide adequate security to the people, particularly those in Balochistan, and even fosters a culture of impunity with perpetrators of abuses rarely brought to justice.

We call on the Government of Pakistan to demonstrate its commitment to preventing such brutal killings and to trace the large number of people reported missing. We recall that, as a State Party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the Convention Against Torture (CAT), Pakistan has the obligation to ensure right to life, and to eradicate torture, respectively.

We urge the Government of Pakistan to pay serious heed to the rights of human rights defenders under the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders. Article 12(2) of the Declaration outlines the obligation of the State that it must “take all necessary measures to ensure the protection by the competent authorities of everyone, individually and in association with others, against any violence, threats, retaliation, de facto or de jure adverse discrimination, pressure or any other arbitrary action as a consequence of his or her legitimate exercise of the rights referred to in the present Declaration.”

FORUM-ASIA, strongly urges the Government of Pakistan to:

  1. Conduct a thorough and independent investigation into the disappearance and brutal killings of Mr. Siddique Eido and Mr. Yousaf Nazar;
  2. Address the issue of impunity by investigating all cases of threats, disappearances and killings of these activist and bringing the perpetrators to justice;
  3. Ratify the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance;
  4. Accept the longstanding request to visit from the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders;
  5. Protect human rights defenders across Pakistan, in particular in Balochistan, and put an end to the intimidation, torture and enforced disappearances so that they may freely and safely continue to report on human rights violations.


Yours Sincerely

Yap Swee Seng
Executive Director
Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA)


Endorsed by:

Ain o Salish Kendra (ASK), Bangladesh
All India Network of NGOs and Individuals Working with NHRIs (AiNNI), India
Alternative ASEAN Network on Burma (Altsean Burma), Regional
Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD), Regional
Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA), Regional
Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Mancha (MASUM), India
Burma Partnership, Burma/Thailand
Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR), Cambodia
Cambodian Working Group for an ASEAN Human Rights Mechanism (CWG), Cambodia
Cambodian League for Promotion and Protection and Defence of Human Rights (LICADHO), Cambodia
Centre for Human Rights and Development (CHRD), Mongolia
Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI), Regional
Citizens’ Watch, Sri Lanka
Education and Research Association for Consumers (Era Consumer), Malaysia
Globe International, Mongolia
Human Rights Defenders Alert – India (HRDA), India
Human Rights Working Group (HRWG), Indonesia
Imparsial, the Indonesia Human Rights Monitor, Indonesia
Informal Sector Service, (INSEC), Nepal
International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, International
International NGO Forum on Indonesian Development (INFID), Indonesia
Judicial System Monitoring Program (JSMP), Timor Leste
Korean House for International Solidarity (KHIS), Republic of Korea
Law and Society Trust (LST), Sri Lanka
Migrant Forum Asia (MFA), Regional
Migrant CARE, Indonesia The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders (OMCT-FIDH), International
Odhikar, Bangladesh
Pax Romana, International
People’s Watch (PW), India
People’s Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR), India
Program Against Custodial Torture & Impunity (PACTI), India
Sisters in Islam (SIS), Malaysia
Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM), Malaysia
Sudhanthra, India
Task Force Detainees Philippines (TFDP), Philippines
Think Centre, Singapore
Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organisation (UNPO), Netherlands
Women’s Rehabilitation Centre (WOREC), Nepal
Youth Action Nepal, Nepal
Ms. Hina Jilani, Pakistan

For inquiries, please contact:
Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA)
246 Times Square Building, 12th Floor, 12-01
Sukhumvit Road, Between Soi 12 & 14
Bangkok, Thailand
Tel. no. +66 2 653 2940 (Ext 402)
Fax no. +66 2 653 2942
E-mail: [email protected]/[email protected]

Copy furnished:

Mr. Asif Ali Zardari
President of Pakistan
President’s Secretariat Islamabad PAKISTAN