Islamabad police ‘releasing’ detained Baloch protesters after bail

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Islamabad police 'releasing' detained Baloch protesters after bail

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad police Sunday said they are releasing the Baloch protestors, who were arrested during demonstration in the federal capital against the “enforced disappearances” of their loved ones, following an approval of the bail.

The development came after the protestors, who travelled to the capital city holding a long march from Turbat, gave the authorities a three-day ultimatum for the release of all the participants of the protest in Islamabad apprehended late on Wednesday night.

They also called for the dismissal of all cases registered against the detained protestors.

The capital territory police, on Wednesday night, used “excessive force” and rounded up all the Baloch protestors, who converged in the capital to stage a protest against “enforced disappearances”. The long march led by Baloch women had started their journey from Balochistan on December 6.

The police action against the Baloch women and men drew widespread condemnations from human rights bodies and political parties. Even the federal ministers admitted that the “protestors who reached Islamabad from Balochistan were not involved in the violence”.

Hearing a petition filed by long march organisers against the “illegal” arrests of Baloch protestors, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) ruled next day: “Let them protest who have come to protest, it’s their constitutional right.”

In a statement issued today on X, formerly Twitter, the Islamabad police said that the protesters had demanded the release of their detained companions during a meeting with a cabinet committee formed by the prime minister.

“Keeping in view the legal requirements, the bail of the arrested protesters has been approved. The detained protesters are being released,” it said, adding that the relatives of the detainees should contact them for information and assistance so that legal assistance can be provided.

Earlier, the Islamabad police said that the court had issued the orders to release 163 protesters after approving their bail.

Meanwhile, the Baloch Yakjahti Committee said that the protest sit-in continues in front of the National Press Club in Islamabad.