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Pakistan Orders more than 100 Turkish Teachers to Leave the Country

The administration of the Pak-Turk Schools has expressed shock over the decision of the government it believes has been taken under pressure

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Lahore, November 16, 2016: On the request of the Erdogan administration, 108 Turkish teachers and their family members have been denied the extension to their visas as the Pak-Turk schools were run by US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen whom Erdogan blamed for the July’s failed military coup.

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The administration of the Pak-Turk Schools has expressed shock over the decision of the  government it believes has been taken under pressure.

“Pak-Turk International Schools and Colleges are extremely concerned over the abrupt decision of the government,” Pak-Turk Education Foundation Board of Directors Chairman Alamgir Khan told PTI.

“Since we have removed all Turkish principals with the Pakistanis and publicly announced that it has no connection with Gulen movement there has been no justification for this decision,” said an official of the Pak-Turk Schools.

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He said, “Now these schools have been operating under a local NGO registered with the Pakistani government.”

“However, these schools will remain functional under the Pakistani administration,” he said.

In August, Turkey’s visiting Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu was promised by Pakistan that it would investigate the network of schools Ankara wanted to be shut for its alleged links with Gulen

“It is not secret that Gulen’s organization has institutions or their presence in Pakistan and in many other countries. I am sure the necessary measures will be taken. We have to be very careful with such organizations and their causing risk and threat for the security and stability of every country that they have a presence,” Cavusoglu had said.

“Initially funding was made from Turkey to establish state of art campuses in Pakistan. But for the last 15 years or so it is generating its own funds here, offering free education and boarding facilities to 35 per cent of the students besides awarding foreign scholarships to them,” the official said.

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The chain of 28 schools and colleges is functioning in Lahore, Islamabad, Multan, Rawalpindi, Karachi, Khairpur, Hyderabad,Jamshoro and Quetta. Almost, 11,000 students from pre-school to ‘A’ levels are studying there.

by NewsGram team with PTI inputs

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American Friends of Balochistan welcomes Trump’s Tough stand on Pak

The American Friends of Balochistan (AFB) issued a statement Monday welcoming Donald Trump's stand on US-Pakistan relations, calling it a vindication of its own stand.

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Donald Trump is famous for his rude comments towards brown people. wikimedia commons
Donald Trump is famous for his rude comments towards brown people. wikimedia commons

Washington, D.C.– The American Friends of Balochistan (AFB) Executive Committee issued a statement Monday welcoming the President’s stand on US-Pakistan relations, calling it a vindication of its own stand.

The AFB said President Donald J. Trump has called out Pakistan’s constant bluffs with the US and pointed out a big chunk of American assistance was used against people of Balochistan in a secret, dirty war instead of the Taliban.

Khwaja Wali Kirani in Balochistan. Wikimedia Commons

“The United States has foolishly given Pakistan more than 33 billion dollars in aid over the last 15 years, and they have given us nothing but lies & deceit, thinking of our leaders as fools. They give safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help. No more!,” President Trump first tweet of 2018 reads.

The tweet was loved by nearly quarter-million Americans and retweeted 83,000 times in less than 24 hours.

The AFB executive committee said the US remains Pakistan’s top foreign aid donor, in addition to the money paid in expectation of cooperation in the Global War on Terror. Yet, for many years now, serving officers in the US Armed Forces have repeatedly spoken out about Pakistan’s perfidy in Afghanistan, which has cost the US lives, money and strategic credibility in the world’s eyes. Pakistan also remains a training ground for terrorism and a prime proliferator of nuclear weapons technology.

No country’s development and democracy have suffered more from Pakistan’s interference via state-sponsored terrorism than Afghanistan. US efforts to help the Afghans rebuild their nation are constantly sabotaged by reeling instability. India is another well-known target.

The AFB said Balochistan is a region rich in natural gas. It that has seen several bloody cycles of insurgency ever since Pakistan forcibly annexed the autonomous Baloch state of Kalat in 1948 in violation of a Standstill Agreement. A portion of historical Balochistan also sits on the other side of Pakistan’s border with Iran. Further, it borders Afghanistan to the north-west. Pakistan’s brutal record in this strategically located province that forms the northern lip of the key Straits of Hormuz has spiked in recent years.

“People of Balochistan tried their very best to work with Pakistan’s false promises of integration after forceful accession, but instead gave genocide to Balochs,” said the statement.

The AFB monitors the situation in Balochistan closely and is in touch with freedom and democracy activists on the ground. The AFB reiterated their call to the Pakistani government to cease violating the physical security of Baloch people, their freedom of expression, and end the policy of economic exploitation and genocidal violence.

A slow-motion genocide in Balochistan has claimed the lives of 35,000 Baloch people, 6,000 of whom were buried in mass graves while 21,000 are Victims of Enforced Disappearances, according to the Voice for Baloch Missing Persons. “The enforced disappearances situation in Balochistan is no different than what it used to be in Chile and Argentine in the 1970s and 1980s,” the AFB executive committee noted.

The AFB executive committee chimed in with similar sentiments expressed by policy experts in academe, veteran politicians, diplomats, intelligence chiefs, and human rights activists. Among them were former Afghan President Hamid Karzai, leading South Asia expert and former Pakistani ambassador Hussain Haqqani, several Baloch freedom and human rights activists cutting across party lines, former head of Afghanistan’s Directorate of Security Amrullah Saleh, and even normally fierce critics of President Trump’s administration such as Prof. Christine Fair, Provost’s Distinguished Associate Professor Georgetown University’s Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service.

The AFB executive committee consists of Jane Eastwood Weisner, Najeeb Khan, Krishna Gudipati, Soumya Chowdhury and Habiba Ashna. The organization was founded by veteran Baloch journalist Ahmar Mustikhan, who is the president.

Hope and doubt have been expressed on whether the US president’s tweet and words will translate into actionable legislation. Mustikhan published a survey of some of these thoughts in an article titled “Wave of joy sweeps across Afghanistan, Balochistan & India over Trump’s first tweet of 2018”.