Lahore, April 26: The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) has strongly condemned a bomb explosion outside an election office of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) in Karachi and other acts of violence there and expressed serious concern at the continuing targeting of candidates, activists and election campaigns of certain political parties.
In a statement issued on Friday, the Commission said: “HRCP condemns the attack on the MQM election office in Karachi in the strongest terms and believes that the continuing attacks on the candidates and workers of some political parties unmistakably display an angle of partisan politics in which parties that advocate certain views are being attacked. If this targeted violence persists, it would render the elections meaningless and make the country hostage to fascist forces. The caretaker set-up and the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) have repeatedly vowed security for the candidates and the election campaigns. If that security has indeed been provided it does not appear to have made a difference and has certainly not made the parties and their workers at the receiving end of this rather systemic targeting feel secure at all. It does not inspire confidence that not one perpetrator of the numerous attacks targeting the MQM and the Awami National Party (ANP) in the last few days has been arrested.
HRCP is also writing to the chief election commissioner to convey its acute concern at this alarming state of affairs and to implore him to take steps that prevent the targeted attacks on the candidates, workers and campaigns of certain political parties and ensure that these parties can continue their campaigns without fear of attacks.
HRCP also cautions all political parties against stay silent simply because those being targeted today happen to be affiliated with different political parties. If an onslaught like this cannot bring home the merits of solidarity and unequivocal opposition of elements whose wishes find expression only in butchery nothing will.
At this juncture, it is more important than ever for the citizens to realise and assert their democratic rights, for if they are scared into staying away from voting then those who have been spilling blood to deny them these rights would already have succeeded in hijacking the polls.”
Category: English Press Release