South Asia

Military Tribunal Courts in Gilgit Baltistan: A Suicide Attack on Local Autonomy

Military Tribunal Courts in Gilgit Baltistan: A Suicide Attack on Local Autonomy

By Senge Sering, President of Institute for Gilgit Baltistan Studies
Location United States United States

Gilgit Baltistan is pressing for autonomy as part of a larger push towards democracy. The Gilgit Baltistan region of Pakistan, long under dispute with India, operates without a constitutional framework. This lack of rule of law has meant that all judicial matters have been guided by political motives. Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s recent establishment of military tribunal courts in the region is a continuation of the policy to rule Gilgit Baltistan as a modern […]

January 22, 2015 · 0 comments · Pakistan, Politics, South Asia
Democracy and National Reconciliation in Sri Lanka: Towards a Peaceful Equation?

Democracy and National Reconciliation in Sri Lanka: Towards a Peaceful Equation?

By Siegfried O. Wolf, Director of Research, South Asia Democratic Forum
Location Germany Germany

The new Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena has to carry out far-reaching constitutional and economic reforms. Sri Lanka not only symbolizes the oldest and longest democratic tradition among post-colonial societies but also an authoritarian shift and one of Asia’s most traumatic civil wars. The armed conflict between the government of Sri Lanka (GoSL), that mainly comprised of members of the Buddhist Sinhalese majority, and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), which claimed to represent […]

January 20, 2015 · 1 comment · Politics, South Asia
Nearly Two Million Children in Balochistan Out of School

Nearly Two Million Children in Balochistan Out of School

By Mir Behram Baloch, Journalist
Location Pakistan Pakistan

Balochistan faces massive education challenges to encourage nearly two million children to return to school. QUETTA —1.8 million children in Balochistan are out of school, said Sardar Raza Barech, education advisor to Chief Minister (CM) of Balochistan on Monday. Mr. Barech made the revelation while speaking at a program titled “Education Governance” that was organized by Mishal Pakistan in Quetta Press Club. According to Barech there are 800 high schools and 1,165 middle schools in […]

Pakistan: Between Coup and Constitutional Engineering

Pakistan: Between Coup and Constitutional Engineering

By Siegfried O. Wolf, Director of Research, South Asia Democratic Forum
Location Germany Germany

Pakistan started the New Year 2015 with another unfortunate episode in its truncated political history. One could once again hear the momentous military rhetoric of the “doctrine of necessity” in order to justify direct intervention into the country’s politics, to establish formal prerogatives and an institutionally ensured role for the military. On January 6, the National Assembly and the Senate approved the 21st Constitutional Amendment Bill and Pakistan Army Act 1952 (Amendment) Bill 2015, unopposed. […]

January 15, 2015 · 3 comments · Pakistan, Politics, South Asia
Dera Bugti: The One Town We Missed

Dera Bugti: The One Town We Missed

By Beauragh Baloch, Activist
Location Pakistan Pakistan

Dera Bugti is a no-go zone in Balochistan, which has escaped media coverage for years. I would not start my article by writing where Dera Bugti exists on the map, because if I do so, you might abandon the article from the start. After reading the line in the starter you might say “Uh, what does that suppose to mean?” This is 99 percent of the time true that whenever an article or news comes […]

New Education Challenges in Balochistan

New Education Challenges in Balochistan

By Aziz Ejaz, Writer
Location Pakistan Pakistan

Balochistan faces serious education challenges as youth quit school to protest the enforced disappearances of their family members. Cases of Baloch missing persons have gone unresolved since 2001. In an unprecedented march on October 27, 2013, 71-year-old Mama Qadeer Baloch led a grueling long march from Balochistan’s capital Quetta to Karachi, and finally to Islamabad. This march was documented by the Voice of Baloch Missing Persons (VBMP) for the safe release of thousands of Baloch […]

164 Bullet-Riddled Bodies Found in Balochistan in 2014

164 Bullet-Riddled Bodies Found in Balochistan in 2014

By Mir Behram Baloch, Journalist
Location Pakistan Pakistan

The people in Balochistan are eager to know about the facts regarding mass graves in their land. According to a home department report, at least 164 bullet-riddled bodies have been found in Balochistan during the last 12 months. Of the victims, the report says 71 have been identified as ethnic Baloch, 35 Pashtun, 19 other ethnicities, while 41 victims could not be identified. Among the dead bodies, 80 were found in Quetta, 41 in Kalat […]

January 5, 2015 · 0 comments · Pakistan, Politics, South Asia