Baloch Americans

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Baloch Americans
Languages
American English · Balochi · Brahui · Saraiki · Sindhi · Urdu · Persian
Religion
Islam
Related ethnic groups
Baloch diaspora

Baloch Americans are Americans of Baloch descent.[1][2]

A 2015 eight-part documentary by VSH News, the first Balochi language news channel, called Baloch in America, shows that Baloch Americans live in different parts of the United States, including Washington D.C., New York, Texas, North Carolina and Washington.[3] While some American Baloch come from Pakistan's Balochistan province, others belong to the Iranian province of Sistan and Baluchistan, Pakistan's city of Karachi and elsewhere in Pakistan. Many Baloch Americans work at nonprofits, information technology companies and in the public sector. Due to Pakistan's persecution of the Baloch, many young Baloch political activists, journalists and intellectuals have moved to the United States and sought political asylum.[4] The United States has mostly accepted Baloch asylum seekers.

Political activism[edit]

Baloch Americans are politically active in dealing with issues concerning the Baloch population in Iran and Pakistan. A congressional hearing of the United States (US) Committee on Foreign Affairs on February 8, 2012, chaired by Republican Congressman Dana Rohrabacher, highlighted human rights atrocities attributed to the Pakistani security forces in Balochistan.[5] The hearing drew severe criticism from the Pakistani government which described it as interference into its domestic problems.[6]

Soon after the hearing on Balochistan, Rohrabacher introduced a resolution in the US House of Representatives on February 18, 2012, calling upon Pakistan to recognise the Baloch right to self-determination. House Representatives Louie Gohmert and Steve King co-sponsored the motion that highlighted Balochistan’s troubled past with Pakistan.[7] In an op-ed published in the Washington Post, Why I support Baluchistan, Rohrabacher said, "I make no apology for submitting a resolution championing the oppressed people of Baluchistan in their dealings with a Pakistani government that has betrayed our trust."[8]

Baloch Americans staged a demonstration outside the White House to protest a visit by Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in October 2013.[9]

On October 22, 2015, a Baloch activist named Ahmar Mastikhan heckled Pakistan's Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif during his speech at the U.S. Institute for Peace. The protester chanted "free free Balochistan" and termed the Pakistani prime minister "Bin Laden's friend".[10] Later on Ahmar Masti Khan claimed that he heckled Nawaz Sharif at the order of Indian intelligence who paid him money to do so. He further claimed that Research and Analysis Wing was funding Baloch militants and that Research and Analysis Wing paid 15 million dollar in last few year. Mastikhan also said that India was supporting terrorism in Pakistan.[11][12][13]

Baloch activists from the Baloch National Movement (BNM) protested outside the White House on February 13, 2016 to condemn the killing of BNM Secretary General Dr. Manan Baloch.[14]

On September 14, 2016, Baloch activists protested outside the United Nations Headquarters to condemn what they described as Pakistan's illegal occupation of Balochistan.[15]

Organizations[edit]

The Balochistan Institute in Washington D.C., founded by Malik Siraj Akbar in February 2016, is a think tank focused on research and dialogue on Balochistan.[16] The podcast DC Live tells the stories of the Baloch Americans.[17]

Notable people[edit]

  • Malik Siraj Akbar, journalist
  • Mahnoor Baloch, actress and model
  • Dr. Wahid Baloch, Washington advocate and President of the Baloch Council of North America
  • Noon Meem Danish, poet of African-Baloch descent[18]
  • References[edit]

    1. ^ Akbar, Malik Siraj (6 November 2011). "Balochistan and US elections". Dawn. Retrieved 23 April 2014.
    2. ^ "Pakistani Americans". Countries and their Cultures. Retrieved 23 April 2014.
    3. ^ VSH News. "Baloch in America". VSH News.
    4. ^ "Pakistani Journalist Explains 'Painful Decision' To Apply For Asylum In U.S." Radio FreeEurope. 2011-11-18.
    5. ^ Malik Siraj, Akbar (February 6, 2012). "US Congressional hearing may spell trouble for Pakistan". Dawn.
    6. ^ Malik Siraj, Akbar (2012-02-15). "A hearing on Balochistan that stirs up new tensions between U.S. and Pakistan". The Hindu.
    7. ^ Imtiaz, Huma (2012-02-18). "US congressman tables bill for Baloch right to independence". Express Tribune.
    8. ^ Rohrabacher, Dana. "Why I support Baluchistan". The Washington Post.
    9. ^ "Baloch Americans demonstrate outside White House to protest visit by Pakistan's Nawaz Sharif". Retrieved 22 April 2014.
    10. ^ "The Man Who Heckled Pakistan's Prime Minister". Huffington Post. 2015-10-29.
    11. ^ "US-based Baloch activist says he heckled Pakistani PM at Indian spy agency's behest". Geo News. Retrieved 17 April 2018.
    12. ^ "Baloch activist says RAW asked him to heckle Nawaz in 2015". Dawn news. Retrieved 18 April 2018.
    13. ^ "Baloch activist who heckled Sharif 'at RAW's behest' spills the beans". Express Tribune. Retrieved 18 April 2018.
    14. ^ Akbar, Malik Siraj (2016-02-13). "A Protest Outside the White House Highlights Pakistan's Rights Abuses in Balochistan". Huffington Post.
    15. ^ "Baloch activists stage protest at UN headquarters in New York". The Times of India. 2016-09-14.
    16. ^ "The Balochistan Institute". Archived from the original on 2016-12-23. Retrieved 2018-11-01.
    17. ^ "DC Live". The Balochistan Institute.
    18. ^ "Amardeep Singh: An Afro-Pakistani Poet". Lehigh.edu. December 11, 2007. Retrieved October 26, 2010.