Pakistan vows to follow constitutional obligations regarding May 9 actions

June 08, 2023

'I would like to reiterate what we have said in the past, that Pakistan is a country of laws,' FO spox says

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Foreign Office spokesperson Mumtaz Zahra Baloch addressing her weekly press briefing in Islamabad, on June 8, 2023, in this still taken from a video. — Facebookforeignofficepk

Pakistan on Thursday vowed to follow all constitutional requirements when taking action against the suspects involved in the May 9 attacks, a day also dubbed as "Black Day", when protests broke out following Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan's arrest.

Foreign Office Spokesperson Mumtaz Zehra Baloch made the statement during her weekly press conference in Islamabad following statements from the rights bodies and US lawmakers asking Pakistan to honour its commitments as thousands of PTI supporters were arrested in connection with the May 9 riots.

The PTI claimed that its workers, including women, were being harassed in prisons, but a committee formed to review their conditions denied the allegations. PTI's women workers themselves also said that they were not harassed whilst behind bars.

"I would like to reiterate what we have said in the past, that Pakistan is a country of laws," the spokesperson said.

"...it is a country which has constitutionally guaranteed human rights and fundamental freedoms and we are a democratic setup with a free and independent judiciary."

"The Government of Pakistan will continue to follow its obligations under the law, under the Constitution," the FO spokesperson added.

Army rebuts claims

It is important to note that the Pakistan Army has also rejected such allegations and said that action is being taken on the basis of “irrefutable evidence”.

“Unfounded and baseless allegations on Law Enforcement Agencies and Security Forces for custodial torture, human rights abuses and stifling of political activities are meant to mislead the people and malign Armed Forces in order to achieve trivial vested political interests,” the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said in a statement after the conclusion of Formation Commanders Conference at the GHQ, Rawalpindi.

The forum while condemning the 9th May Black Day incidents in the strictest sense reiterated their firm resolve that desecrators of Shuhada Monuments, Jinnah House and attackers of military installations would certainly be brought to justice speedily under the Pakistan Army Act and Official Secret Act which are the derivatives of the Constitution.

“In this regard, efforts to create distortions and attempts to take refuge behind imaginary and mirage Human Rights Violations to create smoke screen for hiding the ugly faces of all involved, are absolutely futile and do not stand the abundantly collected irrefutable evidences.”



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