Pak courts order disbanding of 'death squads', probe 'kill and dump' cases

     The Supreme Court of Pakistan has called for an end to military operations against the Baloch and for the disbanding of the 'death squads' of the intelligence agencies operating in Balochistan. A three-member bench of the apex court said this while hearing a petition filed by the president of the Balochistan High Court Bar Association against target killings, kidnapping for ransom and missing persons in the restive province, reports The News. Former Balochistan chief minister and Balochistan National Party (BNP) chief Sardar Akhtar Mengal, appeared before the court and recorded his statement on the worsening law and order situation in the province. Mengal told the court that the situation in Balochistan was worse than Palestine . He alleged that the 'death squads' of the intelligence agencies were exterminating nationalists. Meanwhile, rejecting investigation and autopsy reports in the suo moto case about frequent recovery and dumping of bodies in gunnysacks in and around Peshwar and its adjoining districts, the Peshawar High Court (PHC) has warned the federal and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa governments to ensure an immediate end to the practice or else the court would be compelled to issue orders that might result in the fall of these governments. The two-member bench of the PHC has also warned that arrest warrants could be issued against the Secretary Interior and Secretary Defence if they failed to submit written replies on the issue of the affidavit at the next hearing on November 6. The bench directed the Interior and Defence ministries to ensure the cooperation of spy agencies, including the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Military Intelligence (MI), with the provincial government's Joint Investigation Team (JIT) in investigating these cases. The chief justice said the governments had no right to be in office if they couldn't protect the life and liberty of citizens in line with their constitutional obligation.

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