Lawmakers in the Upper House of parliament were up in arms against the US congressional meeting on the Balochistan issue on Thursday, calling the move a breach of the country's sovereignty and meddling into the internal affairs of Pakistan.
Strongly condemning the US congressional committee hearing on the Balochistan unrest, the senators from all political parties, except the Awami National Party (ANP), questioned how the US lawmakers dared talk about Pakistan's territorial integrity. Speaking on a point of order, Senator Raza Rabbani of the PPP said the move was a direct attack on Pakistan's sovereignty and made it clear that no foreign country would be allowed to examine anything inside Pakistan. "I condemn this in the strongest possible terms… we are not ready to accept any such message as we are a sovereign state. The US which has a track record of human rights violations across the globe ought to think twice before taking any such step," he added.
Rabbani, who is also chairman of Parliamentary Committee on National Security, called upon the government to take serious note of the US committee hearing over the Balochistan issue and ask the US clearly as to why it had called a meeting over a purely internal issue of another sovereign state. He said if the government failed to take appropriate action in this regard, he as the chairman of Parliamentary Committee on National Security, would take a sou motu notice of the hearing. Senator Prof Ibrahim Khan of the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) said Pakistanis had the capacity to resolve its issues without seeking anybody's help. He urged the US to learn to respect human rights.
Senator Ahmed Ali of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) regretted the US congressional committee meeting, saying that the US should have taken such steps against rights abuses in Kashmir instead of exploiting the Balochistan situation.
Senator Abdul Rahim Mandokhel of the PkMAP asked the government to take concrete measures against killing of innocent people without any trial.
Senator Kalsoom Perveen of the Balochistan National Party-Awami said the US should not interfere in Pakistan's internal affairs. "This is our problem and we can solve it in a better way," she said. Contrary to the views of other senators, Senator Haji Muhammad Adeel of the ANP said the world had become a global village and "we cannot stop human rights groups to speak against the atrocities taking place on our soil". Senator Zahid Khan of the ANP also endorsed the views expressed by his fellow colleague, saying that instead of being furious "we should put our own House in order".