Yearly Archives: 2018

Daily World News Digest, 25 May 2018

Syria: 900 bodies exhumed from mass graves in Raqqa

A special unit under the Raqqa Reconstruction Committee that was founded after the liberation of the city from Dae’sh, has put much effort into establishing mass graves in the city and exhuming dead bodies. As part of these efforts, 900 bodies have been exhumed from mass graves so far.

Over 1,000 migrant children are missing in the US

Almost 1,500 migrant children are unaccounted for after being placed with sponsors by the Department of Health and Human Services, according to a top HHS official’s testimony on Thursday the New York Times reports. There have been problems before with migrant children being handed over to human traffickers, and that concern has been raised with this number of kids missing.

Pakistan: protest against enforced disappearances intensifies

Activists of human rights organizations, members of civil society and nationalist parties on Thursday took out rallies…

Daily World News Digest, 24 May 2018

Refugees who go missing trying to reach Europe will not stay unnamed

Malta, Italy, Cyprus and Greece have decided to launch an initiative to identify thousands of refugees who have drowned in the Mediterranean. The International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) has announced that representatives of these four countries will meet in Rome next month to discuss the details of the initiative. “Cooperation between countries can help to estimate the number of missing — those who have died and those who have survived,” said ICMP Director-General Kathryne Bomberger. (Article in Polish)

Scores of migrants rescued in the Strait of Gibraltar

Spanish and Moroccan maritime services have rescued more than 250 migrants trying to cross the Strait of Gibraltar this week. Better weather has seen scores of migrant men, women and children risk their lives trying to cross the strait in small boats.

Bosnia is still searching for 7,000 missing…

Daily World News Digest, 23 May 2018

Philippines’ president Rodrigo Duterte threatens drug suspects publicly

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has told drug suspects to look for a way to get arrested and stay in jail if they want to live longer. In a televised speech on Tuesday, Mr Duterte failed to identify specific targets, but referred to people who grew rich through the illegal drugs trade. It was the latest threat in the President’s anti-drugs crackdown, which has seen more than 4,000, mostly poor drug suspects, killed in clashes with police.

Amnesty: Rohingya insurgents “carried out massacre of Hindus in Myanmar”

Amnesty International has investigated the alleged killings of minority Hindus on 25 August last year and concluded that Myanmar’s army was not the only group that killed civilians in the country. Rohingya insurgents carried out at least one brutal massacre in Rakhine state, the organization says. The Rohingya are an ethnic group, the majority of…

Daily World News Digest, 22 May 2018

New mass graves found in Rwanda

New mass graves from the genocide in Rwanda in 1994 are still being discovered, although the country now faces the phenomenon of genocide denial. In many graves, according to the head of a genocide survivors’ group, “victims were killed and buried, and militias covered them with trash and soil after burning them with acid.”

India: half of those missing in Mumbai are aged 16 to 25

A total of 32,598 people were reported missing from Mumbai in 2014, 2015 and 2016, and 27,565 were subsequently found, according to police. Nearly half of those reported missing in Mumbai every year are aged 16 to 25, which is classified as a “sensitive” age group.

Bangladesh launches “Philippine-style” war on drugs

Twenty-six suspected drug dealers have been killed in raids carried out in different parts of Bangladesh, according to security forces. At least nine suspected traffickers were…

Daily World News Digest, 21 May 2018

Spain: remains of Franco-era victims handed to families

The remains of 22 people killed in the months following Spain’s 1936-39 civil war were handed over to relatives in a ceremony in Guadalajara on Saturday after investigations into a suspected mass grave unearthed the victims. The gravesites of many killed across the country are still unknown, though the Association for the Recovery of Historical Memory has documented 114,226 cases of men and women buried in mass graves around Spain.

Burkina Faso: counterterrorism and extrajudicial killings

Armed Islamist groups in Burkina Faso have “executed suspected government collaborators, intimidated teachers and spread fear among civilians throughout the country”, Human Rights Watch said in a report “By Day We Fear the Army, By Night the Jihadists” released today. The report says that counterterrorism operations by security forces in 2017 and 2018 resulted in extrajudicial killings, abuse of suspects in custody and arbitrary arrests.

Daily World News Digest, 18 May 2018

 Mediterranean: new initiative on missing migrants

To produce a clearer picture of the nature and scale of the European Migration Crisis, Italy, Greece, Malta, and Cyprus will explore measures to coordinate data collection and other activities related to migrants who have gone missing at sea. In partnership with the International Commission on Missing Persons, they will explore ways of accounting for missing migrants in the Mediterranean region.

Asia: civil society under attack

The Guardian has published an assessment of the operating climate for human rights workers in Asia, noting that across the continent they “face visa restrictions, confiscation of passports, travel bans, arbitrary police investigations and detention and in some of the most extreme cases, denial of medical treatment, extrajudicial killings and disappearance”.

Extrajudicial killings in the Philippines

Indigenous peoples and advocacy groups on Thursday submitted complaints, including the alleged extrajudicial killing of 41 people, to the UN Special Rapporteur…

Daily World News Digest, 17 May 2018

Extrajudicial killings in the Philippines

Almost 6,000 people have lost their lives in the Philippines since July 2017 as a result of President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs, according to the Philippine National Police. The administration has been widely criticized internationally over the incidence of extrajudicial killings.

More than 1,000 bodies found in Colombian rivers

More than 1,080 bodies have been found in at least 190 Colombian rivers, according to a report called “Rivers of Life and Death” by journalists from the Paths of Conflicts and Redaction Council, released on Wednesday. Throwing bodies into rivers has been common practice among criminal groups during decades of conflict.

Mediterranean migrant deaths reach 628

The International Organization for Migration reports that 25,338 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea through the first 19 weeks of 2018, while 628 migrants are estimated to have died this year.

India: extrajudicial killings in Uttar…

Daily World News Digest, 16 May 2018

Mass grave of massacre victims found in the Gambia

A mass grave containing the bodies of 12 Africans allegedly killed by a paramilitary force controlled by the former president, Yahya Jammeh, has been identified near the Gambian capital, Banjul. The “Junglers” executed 54 people who were trying to make their way to Spain by sea in 2005, suspecting them of being mercenaries trying to overthrow the government, according to human rights groups that interviewed 30 Gambian officials.

Libya: EU policies said to fuel surge in detentions

A surge in migrants and refugees intercepted at sea by the Libyan authorities has seen at least 2,600 people transferred, in the past two months alone, to squalid detention centers where they face torture and extortion, Amnesty International said today. It said European governments are complicit in these abuses since they are actively supporting the Libyan authorities in stopping sea crossings and sending people…

Daily World News Digest, 15 May 2018

Groups help mothers, families of missing Tunisian migrants

A new project in Tunisia aims to bring attention to the plight of Tunisian migrants and their families. The Italian refugee migrant organization, Carovane Migrante, has partnered with Tunisian NGO La Terre Pour Tous, which supports more than 500 families of missing migrants, to bring a caravan to Tunisia, inspired by the Movimiento Migrante Mesoamerican in Mexico.

Bangladesh urged to investigate enforced disappearance

The UN Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Working Group in Geneva on Monday recommended that Bangladesh thoroughly investigate all incidents of abductions, enforced disappearances, torture and extrajudicial killings, and urged the authorities to probe the alleged involvement of law enforcement agencies in such incidents and bring the perpetrators to justice.

Inadequate statistics on migrant deaths in US

The US Border Patrol has been tasked with tracking and trying to prevent border-crossing deaths, but an investigation by CNN has found that…

Daily World News Digest, 14 May 2018

Sri Lanka: Office on Missing Persons

Al Jazeera reports on the Office on Missing Persons (OMP) in Sri Lanka, which has been established as an independent agency to probe the disappearance of thousands of people during and after the country’s civil war. The OMP is the first of four mechanisms that Sri Lanka promised the UN Human Rights Council it would set up in its effort to grant justice to the victims.

Search continues for missing in Kosovo

The search for people who went missing during the war in Kosovo will continue in a number of locations in Kosovo and Serbia proper, the Kosovo government‘s Missing Persons Commission said in a report issued on Friday. Possible mass grave locations are being investigated in the Djakovica area in western Kosovo and forensic teams are waiting for warrants from prosecutors for another six locations.

Accounting for the missing in Nepal

The Himalayan…