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Allegations of Torture Against Chaman Sit-in Protestors by Pakistan’s Frontier Corps

In a recent development, Chaman sit-in protestors, arrested on June 6, are reportedly facing severe torture by Pakistan’s paramilitary force, the Frontier Corps (FC), during their detention. Reports indicate that the detainees were kept handcuffed for days and blindfolded.

The protestors were arrested following an incident on June 6 when the Pak Army’s Frontier Corps opened fire on peaceful demonstrators in Chaman. This incident escalated tensions, transforming the protest against mandatory passports into a broader struggle against perceived oppressive tactics of the Pakistani establishment.

For over eight months, hundreds of thousands of Pashtuns have been protesting at the Chaman border against the Pakistani government’s imposition of a single-document regime, which requires passports instead of the previously used Tazkira system for trade across the Durand Line. This crossing in Pak-occupied Balochistan is crucial for local traders and disrupts familial ties between communities on both sides of the border.

Despite the prolonged protest, little action has been taken to address these grievances. The Pakistani-controlled media has largely ignored the protest, hoping it would dissipate. In response, the Pak Army and FC have launched crackdowns on the peaceful Pashtun protestors, resulting in fatalities, arrests, and disappearances.

The recent reports of torture add another troubling dimension to the situation, reflecting alleged abuses by the Pak Army against its own citizens. These actions raise concerns about human rights violations and the treatment of dissent in Pakistan.

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