With more than 28,000 of the 40,000 persons who were missing at the end of the war accounted for, the countries of the Western Balkans have established a new and successful model for addressing the issue of missing persons, ICMP Director-General Kathryne Bomberger said today.
“The achievement in the Western Balkans has been remarkable,” Ms Bomberger said. “Few would have believed at the end of the war that so many of the missing could be located and identified. Because of this effort, tens of thousands of families have been able to end the agony of uncertainty and to assert their rights for truth and justice. But it should not be forgotten that 12,000 people have not yet been found, and work must continue at the present rate to account for those who are still missing.”
Ms Bomberger was speaking at the conclusion of…
Peace committee in Nepal receives 482 conflict-era cases
The Kathamandu Post, reported on 13 June that the local peace committee office, Baitadi, has received a total of 482 cases of crimes committed during the decade-long conflict. Of the cases, 412 will come under the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) while 64 have been filed with the Commission of Inquiry into Enforced Disappearances (CIED). The last date to file conflict-era cases with the CIED is the end of the Nepali month of Asadh while the TRC has set the last date to receive such cases at the end of Nepali month of Jestha. http://bit.ly/25Uuw2K
More than 4,000 migrants rescued in Mediterranean Sea
BreitBart reported on 13 June that on Saturday, the Italian Coast Guard said it had picked up 1,348 migrants in 11 rescue operations for a weekend total of 2,578. The Coast Guard also said that one dead body had also been recovered….
Nepal: deadline extended for reporting missing persons
The Himalayan Times published a report on 12 June stating that the Commission of Investigation on Enforced Disappeared Persons (CIEDP) has received 2,084 disappearance-related complaints, which is 589 more than the number of complaints formally lodged with the government. The Ministry of Peace and Reconstruction had listed 1,495 cases of enforced disappearance during the decade-long war that ended in November 2006. CIEDP spokesperson Prof Bishnu Pathak told The Himalayan Times that the transitional mechanism had extended the deadline till mid-July for lodging complaints of enforced disappearance. Pathak expected the number of such complaints to exceed 2,500. CIEDP sources said those coming forward for the first time to lodge complaints had not received any financial compensation from the government yet. http://bit.ly/1tr1Ihj
Abuses of Fallujah Sunnis Raise Question: Does Iraq Gov’t Control of Shiite Militias
Human Rights Watch issued a statement on 9 June saying that…
Nepal conflict victims call for protection
The Kathmandu Post reported on 9 June that conflict victims have called for security after receiving threats when they registered complaints at local peace committees in response to calls from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the Commission on Enforced Disappearances. The Conflict Victims’ Common Platform shared this information at the launch of a monitoring report in Kathmandu on Thursday. The report is on the monitoring of the complaint registration process that the Platform conducted from 10 May to 3 June in different districts. The report states that conflict victims in most districts where the monitoring was carried out received veiled and unveiled threats in the course of filing complaints. The Common Platform has recommended extending the deadline for registering complaints, explaining the purpose of the process, making provisions for the possibility of providing additional and supplementary information and mobilizing mobile teams or units,…
The discovery of a mass grave in the Prijedor area this week is an example of what can be achieved when agencies coordinate their efforts and pool resources, Matthew Holliday, the Head of ICMP’s Western Balkans Program, said today.
This is the first mass grave located as a result of information collected by the Operational Working Group on Missing Persons. The Working Group was established in December last year to investigate the most complex cases, focusing on sites that have been prioritized by MPI field offices in the search for remaining mass graves in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Working Group participants include the POBiH, MPI, SIPA, the RS Centre for Investigation of War Crimes, MUP, the US Embassy, ICTY, ICMP and ICRC.
“The grave, in Hozica Kamen South of Prijedor, was found through the joint work of investigators from the BIH Prosecutor’s Office (POBIH), the Missing…
Former military officers to face trial in Guatemala over mass graves
The Tamil Guardian reported on 8 June that a Guatemala court on Tuesday ordered eight former members of the military to face trial for crimes against humanity and forced disappearances committed during the civil war between 1960 and 1996. The charges are related to mass graves found in the western region of the country, believed to hold the remains of over 565 Mayan people who were held at the former military base of Creompaz. The hearing is scheduled to begin next Tuesday, with Judge Jasmin Barrios, who oversaw the genocide trial of former President Efrain Rios Montt. The men could face up to 50 years in prison, if convicted. http://bit.ly/1tjsdFl
Crimes against humanity committed in Eritrea, UN group warns
The UN News Centre, carried a story on 8 June saying that officials in Eritrea have committed crimes against humanity, including enslavement, rape…
Detained Hong Kong bookseller not seen by Swedish diplomats for more than three months
The South China Morning Post published a story on 6 June saying that Swedish diplomats have not been given access to Gui Minhai, the bookseller detained on the mainland and a Swedish national, for more than three months, according to the country’s top diplomat in Hong Kong. Gui disappeared from his home in Pattaya, Thailand, before resurfacing on the mainland and making confessions on state TV. http://bit.ly/1RWRsRD
Mexico: Woman tortured by police released from prison after four years
Amnesty International reported on 7 June that a judge´s decision to acquit mother of two Yecenia Armenta Graciano and release her from prison in northern Mexico brings an end to four long years of injustice. Yecenia Armenta Graciano was arbitrarily detained by Sinaloa state investigative police on 10 July 2012 and beaten, near-aspyxiated and raped during 15 hours of…
Peacekeepers linked to murders in Central African Republic
The Washington Post reported on 6 June that aid workers have unearthed the remains of 12 people who they say were murdered by international peacekeepers in the Central African Republic in 2014. The troops, from the Republic of Congo, were part of a peacekeeping mission — first under the auspices of the African Union, then the United Nations — aimed at ending a civil war that left thousands dead beginning in late 2012. Human Rights Watch had previously reported on the role Congolese peacekeepers played in enforced disappearances, but the Congolese government “has taken no action toward credible investigations or justice for these crimes,” according to a new report by the group released Tuesday. The African Union peacekeeping mission was absorbed by the United Nations not long after the incident occurred. http://wapo.st/214eOLJ
Nepal transitional justice could affect senior officials
DNA, a news portal…
400 bodies found in mass grave near Fallujah
The Gulf News reported on 5 June that Iraqi forces involved in operations to retake the city of Fallujah on Sunday found a mass grave believed to contain 400 bodies, according to civil and military officials. A colonel in the police from Anbar, where Fallujah is located, said the mass burial site was discovered in the town of Saqlawiya, northwest of Fallujah in the Euphrates Valley. “The mass grave contains about 400 bodies of members of the military. There are also some civilians,” he said, speaking on condition of anonymity. http://bit.ly/22Ij8l7
Bodies exhumed from mass grave in Mexico
On 4 June Russia Today reported that a heavily-pregnant woman and two children were among the bodies recovered during a fortnight-long excavation of a mass grave, dug up by a morgue in central Mexico. The grave was used to dispose of bodies that were not…
UN experts welcome Peru’s newly adopted law on the missing
The UN Office for Human Rights (UNOHCHR) issued a statement today noting that UN experts have welcomed the decision by the Congress of Peru to approve the Law on the Search for Disappeared Persons, which applies to those who went missing during the internal armed conflict between 1980 and 2000. “This is an important step towards realization of every victim’s right to know the truth about the fate and location of their loved ones,” Pablo de Greiff, Special Rapporteur on the promotion of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence, was quoted as saying. The UN Working Group on enforced disappearances visited Peru in June 2015 and will present a report to the UN Human Rights Council in September. http://bit.ly/1XnFn0p
End Enforced Disappearances in Turkmenistan
On 2 June the Norwegian Helsinki Committee called on the government of Turkmenistan to restore…