Insurgency in Balochistan
The Insurgency in Balochistan is a low-intensity insurgency uprising or revolt by Baloch nationalists against the governments of Pakistan and Iran in the Balochistan region, which covers the Balochistan Province in southwestern Pakistan, Sistan and Baluchestan Province in southeastern Iran, and the Balochistan region of southern Afghanistan. Rich in natural resources like natural gas, oil, coal, copper, sulphur, fluoride and gold, this is the largest and least developed province in Pakistan. Armed groups demand greater control of the province's natural resources and political autonomy. Baloch separatists have attacked civilians from other ethnicities throughout the province. In the 2010s, attacks against the Shi'a community by sectarian groups—though not always directly related to the political struggle—have risen, contributing to tensions in Balochistan.In Pakistan's Balochistan province, insurgencies by Baloch nationalists have been fought in 1948, 1958–59, 1962–63 and 1973–1977, with an ongoing low-level insurgency beginning in 2003. This insurgency has begun to weaken. In an article titled "The End of Pakistan's Baloch Insurgency?", Baloch analyst Malik Siraj Akbar reported that Baloch militants had begun killing their own commanders. However, Akbar called anger towards provincial Chief Minister Abdul Malik Baloch "growing and often uncontrollable". Baloch militants have taken some reconciliation offers from the government and offered to hand in their weapons. In April 2016, four militant commanders and 144 militants had surrendered under reconciliation. 600 rebels were killed and 1,025 surrendered after accepting reconciliation as of August 2016. In April 2017, another 500 Baloch rebels surrendered to the state, including members of BRA, UBA, and LeB.Baloch separatists argue they are economically marginalised and poor compared to the rest of Pakistan. China has invested $46 billion in the region. The Balochistan Liberation Army, designated as a terrorist organisation by Pakistan, the United Kingdom and the United States, is the most widely known Baloch separatist group. Since 2000 it has conducted numerous deadly attacks on Pakistani military troops, police, journalists, civilians and education institutions. Other separatist groups include Lashkar-e-Balochistan and the Balochistan Liberation United Front (BLUF).By 2005, the rebellion by Baloch separatists had once again resurged in Iran. The fight over the Iranian Baloch region bordering Pakistan has "not gained" as much ground as the conflict in Pakistan. Human rights activists have accused nationalist militants and the Government of Pakistan of human rights abuses in its suppression of the insurgency.The News International reported in 2012 that a Gallup survey conducted for DFID revealed that the most of the Balochistan province does not support independence from Pakistan, with only 37% of ethnic Baloch and 12% of the Pashtun population of Balochistan favoring independence. However, 67% of Balochistan's population favored greater provincial autonomy, including 79% of ethnic Baloch and 53% of Pashtuns.