Abu Dhabi: Call to save the life of a young Baloch

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Joaquín Alexander Maza Martelli                                                                               UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR),                                         Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) 
Palais Wilson 
52 rue des Pâquis 
CH-1201 Geneva, Switzerland.                                                                                  Tel: +41-22-917.9711,                                                                                                     email: rgomez@ohchr.org, 

Your Excellency,

The International Human Rights Council-Hong Kong (IHRC) is deeply concerned about the life of a young Pakistani Baloch, Mr. Rashid Hussain son of Mr. Deedar Hussain, resident of Villah No. 51, Matyrs Road, AL Manama, Ajman UAE, who is kept incommunicado by the intelligence agency.

 The UAE’s national security agency wants to deport him illegally back to Pakistan. The victim’s cousin and his aunt are also receiving life threats by the agency to hand over his passport or face the consequences.

According to the details, Mr. Rashid Hussain 23, was living and working in the UAE since August 2017. He is ethnic Baloch man from Shahdadkot city, Sindh province, Pakistan. He is the holder of Pakistani Passport no: AU3944441. Due to a threat to his life, he left Pakistan and came to UAE along with his family members and has been living and working there since August 2017. 

One high official from National Security agency, who does not want to show his identity, kept asking Rashid’s elder cousin and his sponsor in Abu Dhabi, Abdul Hafeez, to bring the passport of  the victim. The concerned official was asking to submit his passport at petrol pump, malls, shopping center or different police stations. However the official never showed up. As per the victim despite their genuine efforts to do as they were asked, they continued to receive threats and intimidation

On 26th December 2018, at 9:15 am, Hussain was travelling in a car along with his sponsor Mr. Abdul Hafeez his brother, Mr. Naseer Ahmed, and another ethnic Baloch man, from Dhaid Sharjah to Dubai. They were travelling in a white Toyota Siana car, Dubai Registration no: L-55498. The car was intercepted on Dhaid Road at Flagstaff Emirates by two cars, a white Mercedes and a purple Ultima. Both cars had only one person in each, the officials were in civvies were and speaking in Arabic. They introduced themselves as personnel of local intelligence agency and showed their IDs. They asked for identity papers of everyone, but only took Mr. Rashid with them, against his will, without a warrant.

Three days later on 29th December at around 1:00 in the night, a large number of men, at least 15 of which were armed, came to the family house of Mr. Hussain, they had Hussain with them, who was still handcuffed. They searched the house, harassed and beat the family, including the children. They were asking for Rashid's passport, they did not show any arrest warrant or a search warrant and the family does not know where Rashid has been taken or where he is being held. Family has not seen him since that night.  

Rashid Hussain’s family fears that Rashid’s detention will lead to his deportation to Pakistan, where his life is in extreme danger due to his staunch support of the Baloch national struggle and his championing of Baloch Human Rights, which Pakistan violates on daily basis. However, there is no evidence that Pakistan has ever officially 'wanted' Rashid Hussain since he arrived in the United Arab Emirates. The police and National Security say that there is no case against him in UAE.

His aunt has also written to authorities at UNCHR Abu Dhabi to register complaint against the disappearance and drawing UNCHR’S attention to their plight. The family has requested the agency’s official’s intervention in the matter

We request from your office to take immediate action to save the life of Mr. Rashid Hussain his cousins and aunty who is 63-year-old widow and are living in Sharja. Mr. Hussain’s cousin and Abdul Hafeez’s real brother, Mr. Abdul Majeed, was murdered by the unknown persons, ostensibly by the intelligence agencies in 2010 and his dead body was found on October 24. After about two years of this incident his uncle Mr. Muhammad Ramzan was murdered in the same fashion on February 2, 2012. Both of them were abducted by the persons from intelligence agencies and murdered in custody.

The IHRC-HK fears that if he is deported to Pakistan he will be disappeared and may be tortured and killed as in Balochistan and Sindh provinces the ethnic Baloch activists are tortured and killed in illegal detention centers and their dead bodies are thrown on the streets. Since 2013, several mass graves of allegedly disappeared persons are found, til date more than 14000 Baloch persons have gone missing after their arrests by the state agencies.

The UAE is bound by core international human rights instruments such as ICCPR and UNCAT, which enumerate the explicit and implicit guarantee of non-refoulment and stopping the deportation to such a country where there is concrete evidences of torture, extra judicial killings are present.

Article 9 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says: No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile.

Moreover, Article 3 of the UN Convention against Torture for instance, explicitly prohibits the expulsion or return of a person to another state, where there are substantial grounds for believing that he/she would be in danger of being subjected to torture.

Also, under Article 16 of the  International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance” No State Party shall expel, return ("refouler"), surrender or extradite a person to another State where there are substantial grounds for believing that he or she would be in danger of being subjected to enforced disappearance.”
It is very humbly requested that the UNHCR office in Abu Dhabi, UAE must intervene in this matter to ensure the safe and secure release of Mr. Rashid Hussain. If he is wanted in any case he must be produced before the court of law and must not be deported to Pakistan.

In the light of above, the IHRC urges you take action against Rashid’s deportation and ensure his release from illegal detention of the intelligence agency.

Thank you