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Jinnah’s statue blown up in Gwadar as violence in Balochistan surges

The Jinnah statue was installed in the high security zone of Gwadar

The pro-independence Baloch Republican Army (BRA) has blown up the statue of Mohammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan, in Gwadar. The move is highly symbolic as it questions the legitimacy of the Paksitani state in Balochistan, where several insurgent groups are fighting for independence.  

According to Pakistan's Samaa TV, the statue was installed in the high security zone, which had the residence of the General Officer Commanding (GOC) and the office of the local Deputy Inspector General, on June 21.

Analysts say that the BRA is also sending a bold message to China that it is futile to pump in billions of dollars in the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) – a giant undertaking, which starts from Gwadar, Balochistan's capital and terminates at Kashgar in China's Xinjiang region.

Quoting Gwadar Deputy Commissioner Major Retired Abdul Kabeer, the channel said that people who targeted the statue had disguised as tourists to gain access to the area.

Jinnah statue

The Balochistan Republican Army has claimed responsibility for the attack.

In a statement, BRA said that it was the betrayal and deception by Jinnah on March 27, 1948, which led to the massacre of the Baloch people and the loss of its independent status.

"Jinnah's idol and ideology have no place in Balochistan," the Baloch activists said.

The restive region has seen massive rise in violence and conflict.

On Sunday, Pakistan's Dawn reported that the Baloch Liberation Army has claimed responsibility for a bomb attack on a vehicle of the Frontier Corps in the Khosat area of Harnai district on Saturday which left four security personnel dead and several others injured.

The newspaper also said that on Friday, two security personnel were killed and five others injured in an attack in Awaran district.

On August 20, at the Gwadar East Bay Expressway project in Balochistan, Pakistan, a motorcade carrying Chinese personnel was attacked by a suicide bomber which resulted in the death of two children and injuries to a Chinese national.

Saleem Mandviwalla, the Chairman of the Pakistan's Senate Standing Committee on Planning and Development, has already made public Beijing's dissatisfaction over the "negligible progress" on CPEC project over the past three years.

"They are crying", said Mandviwalla, adding the "Chinese ambassador has complained to me that you have destroyed CPEC and no work was done in the past three years."

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