Bill Sponsor Cites Brief Period of Independence for Kalat
Congressman Dana Rohrabacher (R – CA) has announced that he is introducing a bill into the House of Representatives calling for the independence of Pakistan’s largest province, Balochistan, from the rest of Pakistan.
The bill, co-sponsored by Reps. Louie Gohmert (R – TX) and Steve King (R – IA) follows a subcommittee meeting led by Rohrabacher reporting on human rights abuses in the area, and op-eds co-written by Rohrabacher and Gohmert calling for an independent Balochistan as a way to harm Taliban interests in the region.
The bill cites the former Princely State of Kalat as justification for independence, saying Balochistan was “an independently governed entity known as the Baluch Khanate of Kalat.” Interestingly, the Khanate of Kalat was not traditionally a Baluch kingdom, but a Brahui one, whose territory was slowly eroded by an influx of ethnic Baluchs from neighboring Makran.
The bill will likely further antagonize the Pakistani government, which wasn’t too keen on the House holding hearings in the first place. It is unclear how the House even theoretically could impose such a split on a foreign nation.
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