Yearly Archives: 2016

Daily World News Digest, 20 October 2016

Call for China to release abducted Swedish bookseller

Eurasia Review reports today that Human Rights Watch has called on the Chinese government immediately to release Swedish bookseller Gui Minhai, who disappeared from Thailand a year ago and reappeared in custody in China. The Chinese government has provided little information about the enforced disappearances and detentions of Gui and four other bookseller colleagues in Thailand, Hong Kong, and China. “A full year has gone by, yet all that’s clear is that Chinese authorities have grossly violated the rights of the five booksellers both within and outside China’s borders,” said Sophie Richardson, China director at Human Rights Watch. “China’s willingness to snatch people in Thailand and Hong Kong with the apparent involvement of their governments adds to the concerns.”

Yazidis wait to learn the fate of loved ones in Mosul

Fox News reported yesterday thatCAIRO as the highly anticipated assault…

Daily World News Digest, 19 October 2016

Burundi President signs decree to quit the International Criminal Court

Reuters published an article yesterday on President Pierre Nkurunziza of Burundi, who signed a decree on Tuesday taking his country out of the International Criminal Court, after parliament voted overwhelmingly last week to remove the country from the court’s jurisdiction. The move is unprecedented in a continent whose leaders often complain that the court disproportionately targets Africans. On 12 October, just two lawmakers voted in favor of staying under the jurisdiction of the Dutch-based ICC, while 94 voted against and 14 abstained. In April, the ICC opened a preliminary investigation into Burundi, focusing on killings, imprisonment, torture, rape and other sexual violence, as well as enforced disappearances. Burundi’s government was infuriated last month by a U.N. report that named officials accused of orchestrating the torture and killing political opponents. Since then, Bujumbura has banned three U.N. investigators from its territory…

Daily World News Digest, 18 October 2016

Hong Kong’s Unsolved Mystery

SBS reports today that five men linked to an anti-establishment bookstore in Hong Kong disappeared last year, with many suspecting Chinese involvement. Dateline investigates their case and talks to the daughter of one of the disappeared men, who is speaking out for truth and justice. Gui Minhai, is a China-born Swedish scholar and book publisher. On October 17, 2015 he disappeared, and his whereabouts has been unknown ever since. At the time of his disappearance, he had been last seen in the Thai resort town of Pattaya, leaving his apartment building with an unidentified man who had been waiting and watching the building. It was among a string of disappearances, all linked to a bookstore in downtown Hong Kong. Causeway Bay Books is now empty and unattended, but for years it published books on China’s leaders, and other material considered transgressive by Chinese authorities and banned…

Daily World News Digest, 17 October 2016

More children could go missing when Calais “Jungle” is closed

The Daily Telegraph reported on 15 October that up to 300 unaccompanied children from the Calais “Jungle” camp are expected to arrive for resettlement in Britain within days, according to officials. British and French officials have started registering unaccompanied minors eligible to join relatives in Britain before the camp’s imminent closure. The French government has promised that the sprawling shantytown will be demolished by the end of the year and migrants are already being bussed to reception centers elsewhere in France. Bulldozers could move in as early as 24 October. Anne Longfield, the Children’s Commissioner for England, estimates that about 300 of the estimated 1,200 children at the “Jungle” are eligible to be settled in Britain under European Union rules as they have family members already living in the country. Ms Longfield warned that last time a section of the…

Daily World News Digest, 14 October 2016

Philippines President signs order creating task force on media killings

The Manila Times reported yesterday that President Rodrigo Duterte has signed an administrative order creating a presidential task force that will address the killing of journalists, according to a statement from the Presidential Palace. Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar said the President signed on Tuesday Administrative Order (AO) No. 1 creating the presidential task force on violations of the right to life, liberty, and security of the members of the media. “The present Administration declares a matter of policy that all of these forms of political violence and abuses of powers, whether by agents or elements of the State or of non-State forces against the members of the so-called Fourth Estate, must stop, and towards this end, commits to establish a government-wide program of action where the whole system of the bureaucracy is involved in the efficient, coherent, and…

Daily World News Digest, 13 October 2016

Migrant children missing in Europe

The BBC reported yesterday on the large number of unaccompanied migrant children missing in Europe. Europol estimates that around 10,000 unaccompanied children have gone missing in Europe over the past two years. “There are different reasons arrive unaccompanied,” according to Delphine Moralis, secretary general of Missing Children Europe. “Some of them have been sent by their parents hoping that their child would have a better chance at life, some of these children have been separated from their parents by smugglers as a way of controlling them, and some would have lost their parents in the chaos.” In 2015, according to Missing Children Europe, 91% of the children who arrived in Europe on their own were boys, and 51% were from Afghanistan. But the profile of these unaccompanied children is changing. More girls are arriving in Europe on their own, and the age of the…

Daily World News Digest, 12 October 2016

Mexico to Start New Search for Ayotzinapa Students

Telesur reported yesterday that Mexico’s Attorney General Arely Gomez said Tuesday that another search for the missing students from Ayotzinapa will be launched next week in the towns of Iguala, Cocula and Guerrero, two years after they were reported disappeared during a clash with federal and local police. The investigation will involve foreign criminologists, representatives of their relatives and members of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. Authorities will use a special technology to obtain underground 3D images, in a bid to find possible mass graves. In a four-hour press conference, Gomez added that she will continue the investigation against her predecessor Tomas Zeron de Lucio, accused of having modified the crime scene.

Bone fragments found in Mexican Cartel killing field

Breitbart, an American news portal, carried a story yesterday on more than 3,800 human bone fragments recovered from a…

Daily World News Digest, 11 October 2016

Thousands of elderly people missing in China

The NDTV news portal from India reported on 9 October on the thousands of elderly people who go missing in China every year. A survey released on Sunday by the Zhongmin Social Assistance Institute and a leading news platform Toutiao said, 1,370 senior citizens are reported missing every day with an average age of 76. Women account for 58 percent of the total, it said. The survey noted that many of the missing suffer from mental illness, with 72 percent suffering from some form of memory impairment and 25 percent diagnosed with dementia, state-run Xinhua news agency reported. According to the survey, many cases are related to poverty and the inadequate care provided by family members as they migrate to large cities in search of higher wages. The survey calls for the establishment of a national network to record and find missing people,…

Daily World News Digest, 10 October 2016

Over 600 bodies recovered from mass grave in Mexico

Russia Today carried a story yesterday saying that remains of more than 600 bodies were unearthed from what may become Mexico’s largest mass grave found to date, according to local media. The grave was discovered near the city of Torreon, in a 16-hectare paddock, according to Notimundo news outlet, citing Grupo VIDA, an NGO representing the relatives of missing persons. The bones, teeth, clothing, and footwear of more than 600 victims were found lying in the site. The NGO’s representative, Silvia Ortiz, said the remains have been handed over to the authorities for further identification. Members of the Attorney-General’s office of Mexico and its forensics unit were involved in gathering the remains, as was the National Human Rights Commission.

Hurricane Matthew: Haiti victims buried in mass graves

ABC News, reports today that as the death toll from Hurricane Matthew in…

Daily World News Digest, 7 October 2016

Sri Lanka urged to make enforced disappearance a crime

The Colombo Gazette today carries a statement by Amnesty International noting that Sri Lankans are still waiting for the legislation that would make enforced disappearances a crime under Sri Lankan law. When Sri Lanka co-sponsored UN Human Rights Council Resolution 30/1 in October 2015, among the commitments made were initiatives to account for enforced disappearances. “Sri Lanka has acknowledged that the Prevention of Terrorism Act (which contributed to enforced disappearances) does not meet international standards,” the statement says. “It issued directives designed to protect detainees but people continue to be detained under the Act. Lawmakers should repeal the Act and stop its use immediately.”

Committee on Enforced Disappearances considers Bosnia and Herzegovina report

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) released a statement on 5 October regarding the Committee on Enforced Disappearances, which concluded its consideration…