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HANIF PASHTEEN; Detained Arbitrarily by Pakistan


(a) * Family name(s): ULLAH

(b) * Given names(s): HANIF

(c) Pseudonyms or other forms besides given name, by which he or she may be known: HANIF PASHTEEN

(d) Sex:  male          (e) Occupation/profession: HUMAN RIGHTS DEFENDER 

(f) father’s name: KHAN WARIS  mother’s name: NON

(g) Date of birth: 00-00-0000

(h) Place and country of birth:  NORTH WAZIRISTAN, PAKISTAN

(i) Was the person below 18 years-old at the moment of the disappearance?   NO

(j) Identity document (passport, national identity card, voter’s card or any other relevant national identity card)

Type: PASSPORT   number:  MH2748581           National Identity card No.   21508-7917858-5

date of issue: 07-12-2018 place and country of issue: NORTH WAZIRISTAN, Pakistan

(k) Nationality or nationalities : Pakistani

(l) Address of usual residence:   DISTRICT NORTH WAZIRISTAN, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan

(n) Marital status: MARRIED     

Hanif ULLAH alias Hanif Pashteen is one of the founder members of Pashtun Protection Movement (PTM) and a well-known Human Rights Activist in Pakistan. He was raising his voice against the illegal arrests, enforced disappearances and arbitrary detention of Pashtuns in Pakistan.

Since 2014, Mr. Pashteen has been engaged in human rights advocacy, specifically to promote human rights of marginalized ethnic Pashtuns, freedom of expression and right to assembly, democracy and the rule of law in Pakistan. He Is a leader of the PTM, a non-violent and civil rights movement which campaigned for missing person, raised voice against the atrocities/brutalities of Pakistani government and its all-powerful military on ethnic Pashtuns living in Khyber Paskhtunkhwa Province. He has been subject to harassment, intimidation and surveillance by Pakistani authorities, including several previous arrests for his political activism. 

The State of Pakistan used all methods of threats, harassment and  to stop him but he continues his work. His basic rights to freedom of expression and right to assembly was stifled. He participated in organizing all important gatherings and protests of PTM all across Pakistan for the basic fundamental rights of Pashtuns guaranteed by UN Universal Declaration of 1948 and the very constitution of Pakistan. Due to his activism he was very popular among Pashtun people.

He received several threats to his life by Taliban and even the military secret services of Pakistan. (document attached sent by the Police of district Bannu, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, mentioning threats to his life and offering him security). He refused the police offer of security as he was convinced that police and the state of Pakistan want to keep him under surveillance and stop him from actively participating  in the activities of PTM.


The last but not the least important event which lead to his arbitrary arrest on false charges of killing an ISI personnel was that he organized a PTM protest at SRADARGHAH, North Waziritan on July 2, 2019 demanding justice for the victims of Khar-Qamar massacre committed by Pakistan Army (killing 16 and injuring 45 ethnic Pashtuns belonging to PTM) and the release of two members of Parliament Mohsin Dawar and Ali Wazir.

To teach him a lesson for his this bold step of holding protest, on the very next day on July 3, 2019 at night time several masked ISI personnels in civilian clothes tried to enter his house No. 203 BLOCK A, Township Bannu District, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. First, they entered the house by climbing the boundary wall of the house but as the doors of the rooms inside the house were closed, they returned back outside the house and knocked the main door. Hanif ULLAH Pashteen asked them as to who are they? They replied that they are friends. Hanif asked them to go and come back in the morning to meet as night is not the time to have a meeting.  On hearing this, they replied that they are actually  policemen. He again told them that if they are policemen then why they want to meet him late night?. On hearing the response of Hanif ULLAH Pashteen they started pounding the door of the house to break it. As, Hanif ULLAH Pashteen was aware of security threats to his life from Taliban as informed by the police on May 5, 2019, he had already called the nearby police station in the meantime. Then he and his family heard the firing of shots from outside.

 Hanif ULLAH Pashteen and his family are not sure whether these were policemen who came on the request of Hanif Pashteen to protect him or due some misunderstanding among themselves the ISI personnel fired on their own ISI  colleagues that  may have resulted in the killing of Hawaldar Shakir Azim and injuring of Hawaldar Mohsin and ASI Shakirullah.

After 40 minutes, the policemen in uniform arrived and asked Hanif ULLAH Pashteen and his family members to follow them to the nearby police station in district Bannu. To their surprise, it was revealed to them by the police that one ISI person was killed and two were injured in the firing. The police registred an FIR No.19 in early morning hours at 03:50H dated: 04-07-2019 registered under sections 324-353-34-7ATA-15AA.

On July 04, 2019 a DPO (District Police Offier) and a DIG (Director General) of police organized a conference for press and informed the media that one ISI personnel Hawaldar Shakir Azim was killed and two others named Hawaldar Mohsin and ASI Shakirullah were injured  in an encounter by Hanif ULLAH Pashteen along with two co-accused Fahim ULLAH and Khawaj Mir alias Azam Mir . Both these officers told media that as Hanif ULLAH Pashteen was already needed in terrorism charges through  an FIR (First Information Report) No. 546 registered under sections 188/506/12-B/124-A PPC (copy attached) against him on July 2, 2019. So, the plainclothes ISI men went there to his house to arrest him.

Hanif ULLAH Pashteen was formally arrested on July 4, 2019 on contrived charges of ” provoking trouble” and “promoting terrorism. Hanif ULLAH Pashteen filed a petition for bail before the special Judge ANTI TERRORISM court which was rejected by the said judge on 05-11-2019. (copy of  the order attached). He filed again a Bail Petition No. 421.6/2019 (copy attached) before the Peshawar HIGHT COURT which was also rejected which shows the unfairness and biasedness of the state institutions as he cannot be kept in custody before the trial and the trial is still not started.


Many doubts and question arise about the FIR and the charges that have been filed against Hanif ULLAH Pashteen which are as under;

  1. That, an FIR was registered against Hanif Pashteen on the same day and his house is attacked on the same night without any warrants and that also by ISI personnel in civilians clothes. How could it be possible?
  2. That, on the same day of protest on July 2, 2019 Hanif Pashteen was negotiating with the police to give him permission to hold the protest. If he was needed in terrorism charges then why police did not arrest him instead of negotiating with him. All videos and pictures are available.
  3. That, If Hanif Pashteen was needed in terrorism charges by police then why did the ISI personnel in civilian clothes raid the house of Hanif Pashteen rather than police in uniform.
  4. That, A few days earlier Hanif Pashteen was accompanying the delegation of Human Rights commission of Pakistan to investigate the Khar-Qamar massacre committed by the Pakistani ARMY. Pictures of  Hanif Pashteen with senator Farhattullah Babar, chairman  of HRCP are available.
  5. That, the body of the killed ISI personel is never shown to the press. So, there are doubts whether this man was really killed on the same night and at the same place or that dead really exist. Nobody has seen the body of the person killed in this case which put real doubts on the case.

Furthermore, It is a well-known fact that Hanif Pashteen is a human rights activist, a law abiding citizen and has never violated the law of the land in his peaceful and non-violent protests for the rights of the people. He faced courts respectfully despite several concocted cases by the state of Pakistan to stop him from his activism.  So, it is impossible for a person who work to save lives can resort to killing a human being.

Pakistan’s unlawful treatment of Mr. Hanif Pashteen is part of a pattern of repression and intimidation against human rights defenders who dare to speak out against the Punjab dominated state and its powerful Army which consider Pashtuns as second class citizens, thousands of them are still arbitrarily detained, extra-judicially killed and tortured.

He has not been permitted any communication with his family, either by telephone or through in person visits.

While in detention, Mr. Pashteen is being held in poor conditions with overcrowding, inhumane physical inspections, and food lacking in nutrients. In addition, Mr. Pashteen is being denied sufficient medical care and is in imminent danger of getting infected by lethal coronavirus. 

Mr. Pashteen has never been brought before a judge or trial court, apparently due to lack of evidence. 

Keeping in mind the brief history of Hanif Pashteen and his work as human rights defender, we are sure that he is not responsible for the killing of the ISI personnel and is arrested arbitrarily in false charges. He is in fact a prisoner of Conscience. We request you honor to take up the case with Pakistani authorities requesting them to release him and ensure a faire trial. Articles 7, 18 and 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) as proclaimed by UN General Assembly on 10 December, 1948 apply to this case.



* Organization submitting the communication

(e) Contact details (address, telephone, fax, email): Institut de recherche et d’études stratégiques de Khyber (IRESK)

Email address :


5. confidentiality request

Please state whether you would like your identity to be kept confidential

No request for confidentiality: No request for confidentiality

* Date: 27-04-2020       Place: Paris, France

* Signature of author:


 President of IRESK

Note: All the relevant documents are attached.

Relevant articles of UDHR are as under;

Article 7.
 All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this Declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination.

Article 18.
 Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.

Article 19.
 Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.

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