Baluchistan De Jure Ruler's Email Hacked
The email of the De Jure Ruler of Baluchistan, who is seeking asylum in the United Kingdom, was hacked early Friday.
The Khan of Kalat Suleman Daud Ahmedzai, 45, is to Baluchistan--a Texas-sized stateless country in southwest Asia-- what the late Zahir Shah was to Afghanistan. His family had ruled Baluchistan for more than three centuries and he carries the title Beglar Begi, which means Prince Among Princes, while many Baluch address him as His Highness.
The hacker used Ahmedzai's hotmail account to send an email early Friday. The email reads:
Sorry I did not Inform You about my traveling to West Africa, Nigeria for a program. Am having some difficulties . I misplaced my wallet on my way to the hotel where my money and other valuables were kept i will like you to assist me with a loan of $2,300 to sort-out my hotel bills and get myself back home before Xmas. I will appreciate whatever you can afford and I'll pay you back as soon as i return, Meanwhile i will want you to wire the money to me right here via western union money transfer to me via the hotel manager's information due to the loss of my passport. The details to send the money below .
Here are the details :
Name: CURTIS WOOD FOWLER
Address :Eko Hotel And Suites. Rm 129a.
Mehrab Sarjovi, a confidante of the Khan in London, immediately alerted people that the email was a hoax. “The Khan has not requested money from anyone and he is very much in Cardiff, not Africa,” Sarjovi said.
Ahmedzai said he would soon have a new email address.
“I received more than a hundred phone calls,” he told this correspondent on phone. “There were 85 SMS messages on my mobile phone.”
Saeed Al-Ameeri, a Baluch veteran who now lives in the Gulf port city of Ajman and is naturalized in the U.A.E., said he too had received the hoax email. “It can be the work of an enemy agent or an African money grabber,” he said.
Al-Ameeri felt the hacker on seeing his name might have thought that he was a big businessman in the Gulf and could afford to send the amount immediately. “When I talked with His Highness [Ahmedzai], he told me that he cannot travel to any country [because of asylum petition]."
This correspondent also got the same hoax email, but when he asked the sender for the phone number there was no response.
Iqbal Tareen, coordinator of the Forum for Justice and Democracy in Pakistan and who is also a computer geek, said since the Khan of Kalat obtained his email address while he was in Pakistan it could be as easy as cheese cake for the Pakistani intelligence to hack his email
“The best way to avoid such hacking is to continuously change the password and to ensure the password has many different characters,” Tareen said.
Ahmedzai shot into prominence in Baluchistan nationalist politics after the extra judicial killing of Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti, 80, former governor and chief minister of the blood-spocked state, at the hands of Pakistan army in August 2006.
After Bugti's death, Ahmedzai had called a grand jirga, or tribal assembly, that was attended by nearly all 200 chieftans in Baluchistan, called Sardars, and more than 800 leaders from all walks of life.
To punish him for his act of defiance, the Pakistani establishment tried to frame him in a false bomb blast case. Ahmedzai left Pakistan on the ruse of going for the annual Muslim pilgrimage to Mekkah called Hajj, but landed in Dubai and then travelled to the United Kingdom to seek asylum.
However, Ahmedzai asylum petition has been shot down by the British authorities twice so far—ostensibly under pressure from Islamabad. He will now be appealing the case in an Asylum Court.
“They did not even give him a proper hearing,” said Selig S. Harrison, Asia Director for the DC-based Center for International Policy. Harrison fears Ahmedzai will be killed if he is returned to Pakistan.
Another prominent human rights activist, Peter Tatchell, who is Green Party Oxford East candate, is defending Ahmedzai's asylum petition.
“The Khan is seen by many Baloch people as their head of state,” said Mr Tatchell.
He said Ahmedzai's treatment by the British government has been squalid and disrespectful.
“Suleman Ahmedzai is the direct descendant of the Khan of Kalat, the monarch of the state of Kalat, who signed a Treaty with the British government in 1876, making what is now Balochistan a British Protectorate.
“His grandfather was head of state when Balochistan secured its brief period of independence in 1947, before it was invaded and annexed by Pakistan in 1948. He attended the Queen’s coronation in 1953, with other world leaders, as the honoured guest of the British government.
“Refusing Suleman Ahmedzai asylum is symptomatic of a pattern of harassment of Baloch refugees by the U.K. authorities.
“Pakistan’s military and intelligence services have threatened to end all cooperation with the U.K. unless our government cracks down on Baloch dissidents exiled here.
“This may be part of the reason why Suleman Ahmedzai has had such difficulty in gaining asylum," Tatchell said.
Baluchistan became an independent state in August 1947, totally separate from Pakistan and India, but the Baluch say they have documents to prove it was illegally annexed by Pakistan in March 1948 through a so-called Instrument of Accession. There have been five uprisings since then that has left tens of thousands dead to date.
Much earlier, Baluchistan's bicameral parliament had voted unanimously in favor of independence when the matter of whether to remain independent or join the union of India was brought before it--becoming part of Pakistan was not even an option--, Baluch nationalists assert to this day.
In addition to Bugti, the dead include top crust of the Baluch society like state assembly member Bala'ach Marri, who was killed in November last year and who was son of veteran nationalist leader Nawab Khair Bakhsh Marri, Mir Asadaullah Mengal, who was killed when the late Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was in power (1972-77) and who was eldest son of former chief minister Sardar Ataullah Mengal , and the sons of Nawab Nauroz Khan Zehri, who were hanged during the regime of Gen. Ayub Khan (1958-69). Zehri, 90, died in prison.
Ahmedzai's grand uncle, Agha Abdul Karim, was the leader of the first uprising against the illegal annexation of Baluchistan and later spent nearly two decades in jail. Ahmedzai move to appeal to the International Court of Justice at the Hague to get justice for his people awaits international support.