The Baloch of Iran live in the pastoral lands of the south-west and south in Hilmand and Faryab Provinces and practise Sunni Islam.
In keeping with our nomadic tradition, lands are not privately owned but belong to the whole tribe. In recent years the Iranian government has started privatized land under the government policy.
While there has been a strong Baloch pull for autonomy, our struggles for independence have rarely attracted attention in the outside world.
We are located in the Iranian highlands, an area that stretches eastward along the Gulf of Oman coast to the Pakistan border and includes some of the most desolate country in the world.
About half of the our tribe are semi-nomadic or nomadic; the remainder are settled farmers or townsmen. Tribal organization remains intact among nomadic and seminomadic Baloch tribal pattern. Our community and traditions are under attack by the Iranian government.
The Iranian theocratic regime is engaged in slow-motion genocide of the Baloch people in Iranian-occupied Balochistan. Baluchis constitute 25% of the victims who were executed by the Iran government.
Baloch identity is further heightened by the fact that many Baloch children are living undocumented in Iran. Thus, they are not only denied the ability to obtain an education in their native tongues, but in some instances are denied citizenship altogether.
Iran government has imposed “unlawful cross border commerce” in the traditional travel routes which of itself imposes restrictions related to trade and movement on these communities. Historically Balochistan straddles the border of three nation-states, and Baloch who engages in trade throughout this region are often smeared with terms such as “smugglers”.
The state-sanctioned repression that been has authorized against the Baloch include sanctions directed toward the sale of Balochi livestock, traditional arts, and agricultural production. The Iranian government illegally takes agricultural production from the Baloch people. Farmers have no authority over sale of their own crops.
In June at least 168 people have been executed by Iranian authorities in the first five months of 2022 alone. Of these, 25 individuals are of the Baloch ethnic minority group, according making our community the largest target of Iran’s kangaroo trials.
At least 400 Baloch have been executed and arrested in the past two years alone. No formal charges were ever issued by the government. Arrests have targeted Balochi political leaders who have pushed for autonomy.