The United States on Tuesday blacklisted former Malir senior superintendent of police (SSP), Rao Anwar, for engaging in “serious human rights abuse” by carrying out alleged fake police ‘encounters’ in which scores of individuals including Waziristan native Naqeebullah Mehsud were killed, the US Treasury Department said. Pakistan Peoples Party Co-Chairperson Asif Ali Zardari’s “bahadur bacha” (brave child) has to face global condemnation for his anti-human approach during his service in Karachi.
“The United States will not tolerate torture, kidnapping, sexual violence, murder or brutality against innocent civilians,” said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin https://t.co/q9xAMzRr4K
— Dawn.com (@dawn_com) December 10, 2019
It is important to note that Anwar is among 18 individuals from six countries that the Trump administration has imposed economic sanctions on for suspected human rights violations. Two others have been banned from entering the US, including the former consul general of Saudi Arabia in Turkey for his alleged role in the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Tuesday’s announcement was made in connection with International Human Rights Day.
“During his tenure as the Senior Superintendent of Police in District Malir, Pakistan, Rao Anwar Khan (Anwar) was reportedly responsible for staging numerous fake police encounters in which individuals were killed by police, and was involved in over 190 police encounters that resulted in the deaths of over 400 people, including the murder of Naqeebullah Mehsood,” the US Treasury said in a statement.
It said Anwar “helped to lead a network of police and criminal thugs that were allegedly responsible for extortion, land grabbing, narcotics, and murder”.
According to the press release, the former Malir SSP has been designated “for being responsible for or complicit in, or having directly or indirectly engaged in, serious human rights abuse”. The sanctions freeze the US assets of the 18 designated individuals and prohibit Americans from doing business with them. “The United States will not tolerate torture, kidnapping, sexual violence, murder or brutality against innocent civilians,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement.
On Int'l.Human Rights Day the US on Tuesday blacklisted former Pakistani police officer Rao Anwar for serous human rights abuses & "for staging numerous fake police encounters"holding him responsible for"the deaths of over 400 people,including the murder of Naqeebullah Mehsood." pic.twitter.com/Uk5oRTp9n2
— VOA DEEWA (@voadeewa) December 10, 2019
According to Anwar, the four men were part of the terrorist outfit Tehreek e Taliban Pakistan (TTP). Anwar had filed an FIR against Mehsud and three others after their death in a staged encounter via false implication according to findings by a joint investigation team (JIT) established later. Mehsud who was a father of two and an aspiring model displayed no extremist tendencies. Following the JIT reports, two FIRs were lodged against Anwar by the police and by Mehsud’s father for the murder and false implication of an innocent citizen.
Known as the “encounter specialist” within law-enforcement circles, Anwar has not only managed to evade the law but thanks to the Rangers incursion in 2013 revamped his efforts threefold. “He led a team of killing machines. There was no one to stop him,” mentions a senior police official. No one took notice of his actions early on because while everybody knows the truth the police command cannot touch him due to the close connections he has set up throughout his career with criminal bosses, political figures and other personalities within the security establishment.
Furthermore, no records of Rao Anwar’s encounter killings are filed at the central police office in Karachi. According to another senior police officer, Anwar’s proficiency was capitalized on by security agencies from all over the country. People from as far as FATA were airlifted to be “dispatched” in Karachi. Among many of those people were missing persons mostly belonging from Pashtun clans.
Rao Anwar Khan of Pakistan also was sanctioned. According to the Treasury Department, as a senior police officer he staged “numerous fake police encounters in which individuals were killed by police, and was involved in over 190 police encounters.https://t.co/xJUMdA4bNs
— Mohsin Dawar (@mjdawar) December 10, 2019
This has had a reprisal effect where policemen in Karachi are being targeted in vengeance. However, while the innocent civil servants die and missing persons continue to disappear in staged encounters the top police officer like Rao Anwar continue to take the law into their own hands. After listening to all arguments, the court had reserved its decision on the bail plea of Anwar, DSP Ahmed, and four others, namely; Assistant Sub-inspector Supurd Hussain, Head Constable Khizer Hayat, and Sub-inspector Muhammad Yaseen.