Unmanned, Unethical, Unconcerned.

People in the Middle East are living under drones since October 2001, when U.S. deployed the first ones in Afghanistan. A recent report of Amnesty International have brought to light this topic, condemning situations of civilian killed by drones. How could a government explain an act like this?

MQ-9_Reaper_in_flight_(2007)

Drones are aircrafts without a human pilot inside but controlled by computers. The government of the U.S. kept the drones program in secret until less than a year and after that its use has been increased.

The U.S. is defending as this is a situation of war, but even in the condition of war, governments and countries should have ethical and moral concerns. They should not attack innocent people. While war is a bad situation in itself already, a government shouldn’t use unbalanced force against weaker countries just because it’s economically profitable.

Not only US is increasing the number of drones, but also another countries like Israel are developing it. The question is if US will still defend drones when North Corea, for example, deploy them -if they aren’t doing it already-. And what does the population think about it?

Most experts in international relationships and journalists -specially in Europe-condemn this situation; but in the U.S. some voices say that this program continues and justifies the methods used by George W. Bush against terrorism. It seems that everything is all right when it is about “national security”. And the most population doesn’t know even what a drone is, so there is a part of the Occidental world that is completely unconcerned.

“Killing a civilian who is not directly involved in hostile action is an arbitrary deprivation of life.”Amnesty International’s report “Will I be next?”

An independent study from New American Foundation has revealed, that, during Obama’s administration, between 1507 and 2438 people has died, of which between 148 and 309 were civilians. And apart from the property damage, people in Pakistan, Yemen, Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan is living day-by-day looking at the skies and wondering if the person who has next to them could be a target.

Is it really ethical for a government which has the economical power of destroying and damaging to use all their sources and supplies to damage a weaker country? As we all know, war is always between governments not between citizens although they’re the main affected. It’s impossible to conceive that in some part of the planet, right know, a civilian family can be terrified, hearing the sound of a drone above their heads. Even during war, Humanity should have morality issues.

Another “Pirate´´ attack in Nigeria

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Armed pirates attacked an oil products tanker off the coast of Nigeria in West Africa and abducted an unknown number of crew, security sources said on Tuesday.

Increasing piracy in the Gulf of Guinea region, which includes Africa’s No. 1 oil producer Nigeria and is a significant source of cocoa and metals for world markets, is jacking up costs for shipping firms operating there.

The Nigerian-flagged MT Matrix was boarded by gunmen in the early hours of Saturday around 40 nautical miles off the coast of oil-producing Bayelsa state, two security sources said, in a stretch of water often targeted by pirates in recent months.

There were 12 Pakistani and five Nigerian crew aboard the vessel when it was attacked, one of the sources asid, and is ignored if there are still alive or not.

A spokesman for ship operator Val Oil Trading, who refused to give his name, confirmed there had been an “accident”, without giving further details.

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Last month there were two attacks in the Gulf of Guinea where foreigners were kidnapped and released a few weeks later. Security sources believe ransoms were paid – an increasingly lucrative business for criminal gangs.

International navies have not launched counter-piracy missions in the Gulf of Guinea, leaving the many vessels that anchor off Nigeria vulnerable to attack.

On the other hand, the Eastern side of Africa, piracy that was once a scourge off the coast of Somalia has been largely brought under control by international naval patrols and the stationing of armed guards aboard merchant vessels, companies that now are working at the Nigerian coast and at the rest of the gulf of Guinea are starting to consider the use of the services of these “mercenaries´´ at the oil tankers and the oil rigs because the governments of that part of the world are unable to protect them and the international society is not interested to send war ships because, unlikely to the Somalian case, that region is not a important crossroad for the international business. That even is not as good as the red sea to hunt boats gad made the increasing of the number of pirates that can act freely in the region.

The majority of the world have ignored this action and even the Pakistan government has not make any comment yet. Time will say if we are able to stop this before this became a new red sea.

THE CONFLICT OF KASHMIR

Kashmir is a region located in the northern Indian subcontinent, is currently divided between India, Pakistan and China, is one focus of international disputes more important today.

The border between the two sectors is at a height of over 6,000 meters above sea level, so it is called the highest battlefield in the world.Image

Since 1947, date of creation of Pakistan and India, both countries maintain a constant conflict over the region of Kashmir that has caused numerous diplomatic bickering and fighting. The territory has been divided between India and Pakistan since 1947.India controls most of Kashmir, a territory organized as the State of Jammu and Kashmir. Since then they have fought three wars and several smaller conflicts, not yet found an effective solution to a dispute that is causing many casualties and human rights violations both by the Indian armed forces and armed groups from Pakistan.

The conflict between India and Pakistan

India and Pakistan have fought two wars since independence from Britain over the Kashmir issue.The conflict began in 1947 when the Maharaja of Kashmir, has decided to include the territory toIndiato prevent the triumph of the guerrillas, pro-Pakistan. Under the terms of Indian independence, the Muslim-majority territory to Pakistan would.Since then,Pakistanand the UN have repeatedly demanded a referendum on the status of Kashmirnever held.

The problem in Kashmir is not religious diversity that occurs throughoutIndia, but a political conflict arising from a disastrous territorial partition by Western powers during the process of decolonization.The set of people in Kashmir want to belong toIndiaorPakistanis less than 10% of the population. The vast majority of it would simply self-determination, be independent as a people of both states and the Chinese state. However, none of the political parties in India or Pakistan supports this because only defend their interests.

The violation of human rights in Kashmir

Various international organizations have been denouncing for years human rights violations, both by Muslim militants fighting for independence and which are supported byPakistan, as by the Indian security forces.

In their reports include torture, abuse, rape, disappearances, summary executions, the repression of democratic freedoms and restrictions on the media. So far, the conflict has killed more than 60,000 people, most of them civilians. Thus, in one of the most militarized in the world, its inhabitants are deprived of all hope to self-government, of a cultural project that respects the particularities of the population and an economic program that can bring development.

Current situation of conflict

In November 2003,Pakistandeclared a cease-fire that was quickly matched byIndia, and the following month, both countries agreed to establish direct air links and to allow its aircraft flights in the airspace of the other, after two years of prohibition.

Another step forward to establish relations between the two countries came in April 2005 when for the first time in 60 years, a bus service was established between Muzaffarabad in Pakistani control area, andSrinagarin the Indian area.

Thus, as seen in recent years there have been some advances necessary to maintain the hope of peace talks betweenPakistanandIndia. However, so far not been taken into account too the Kashmiri independence groups who consider leaving India to join Pakistan would move from oppression to another, and no doubt, are key players in any peace process conduct intended to Kashmir.Image

The solution of this conflict is linked to nuclear disarmament in both India and Pakistan, which, personally, I see very difficult. This is because the new multipolar system prevents nations afford to lose elements that ensure the security and national integrity. On the other hand, we can not deny the omens about the wars of the new century for natural resources will, so that the jurisdiction of Kashmiris disputed even by the Siachen glacier.

By Andrea Sánchez, Marta Saguar, María Cortés y Víctor Corvera.

Pakistan Blasphemy Controversy

On the 2nd of March, Pakistan’s government minister for religious minorities, Shahbaz Bhatti, was assassinated when he has leaving his mother’s house. He was shot by a group of Pakistani Taliban. At that moment he was not accompanied by the security group each member of the government has, and that’s an important subject which is still in the air.

Bhatti’s murdered has generated a lot of controversy, as after the minister announced that he wanted to reform the existing blasphemy laws in Pakistan, he began to receive many death threats, mainly by Islamist militants. Mr. Bhatti put up himself over the situation saying that he would still making great efforts in reforming the blasphemy law. This turned out to increase even more the polemic situation, and all the death threats received came true. This is a real proof of what can happen to anyone who thinks in a different way in extreme political or religious states.

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Car’s bombing and Pakistan’s situation

A bomb car exploded in the district of Hangu, province of north-west, and killed five civilians nearby.

Hangu is located in a Federally Administrated Tribal Area, that has suffered continuously attacks, and this has been the last one.  All of these occurred in Doaba, a city with a large number of militant’s attacks, located over 18 miles away from Hangu. This is not the only regions that has suffered this kind of damage, as some report told, the Pakistani Taliban hide really close to the Orakazai region, and that’s where they plain the majority of the attacks. As another example of these attacks, at the beginning of this month, three policemen and a civilian were injured in another explosion in Hangu.

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Obama reactiva la Conferencia sobre el Desarme

El Gobierno de Estados Unidos quiere reactivar el control mundial del armamento y ha dicho que ningún país tiene derecho a impedir que haya negociaciones sobre el, posiblemente aludiendo a Pakistán.

Pakistán reiteró este martes que no puede apoyar unas negociaciones sobre el fin de la producción de plutonio y de uranio muy enriquecido. Varios diplomáticos y responsables de la ONU afirman que es el único Estado miembro de los 65 que asisten a la Conferencia sobre el desarme que se niega a respaldar el consenso. Pakistán insiste en que también habría que incluir las reservas existentes de material fisible para contrarrestar lo que percibe como la ventaja estratégica de India. Leer más de esta entrada

Aviones no tripulados atacan en Pakistán

El pasado 12 de enero al menos tres milicianos talibanes resultaron muertos y dos más heridos  en un ataque realizado al  noroeste de Pakistán por un avión no tripulado, perteneciente el ejército de los Estados Unidos. Según fuentes oficiales pakistaníes, los fallecidos, de los que todavía se desconoce su identidad, tendrían procedencia “extranjera”. Posiblemente de origen árabe o centroasiático, los milicianos serían supuestos miembros combatientes milicianos pertenecientes a la red terrorista internacional de Al Qaeda.

Este tipo de ataques selectivos se han multiplicado en gran número en los dos últimos años y  costaron la vida, solo en 2010, a más de 650 personas, marcando como principal objetivo a miembros terroristas y supuestos colaboradores de la insurgencia afgana refugiados en Warizistán del Norte, región fronteriza con Afganistán.

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