Posts Categorized: Daily Digest

Daily Digest, 14 June 2019

Wang Kelian: Syndicate could have been operating years before bodies’ discovery

A human trafficking syndicate in northern Malaysia could have been operating for several years before it was discovered by police in January 2015, The New Straits Times reports. A forensic expert testifying before the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the discovery of mass graves in Wang Kelian said that some bodies could have been buried three or four years before the discovery based on post-mortem examinations conducted on bodies exhumed from the graves. He added that bodies exhumed from the mass graves were received in stages between 25 May 25 and 8 June 2015, with 114 bodies received in total with the victims estimated to be 10 to 40 years old.

Venezuela: Migrants missing after boat reportedly sinks

Thirty-two Venezuelan migrants are reported missing after the boat they were travelling on sank, according to the BBC. The migrants left…

Daily Digest, 12 June 2019

United Nations Security Council addresses missing persons

The UN News Center reports that on Tuesday the Security Council adopted its first-ever resolution dealing specifically with persons reported missing in armed conflict. Unanimously adopting resolution 2474 (2019), the Council called upon parties to armed conflict to take all appropriate measures, to actively search for persons reported missing, to enable the return of their remains and to account for persons reported missing “without adverse distinction”.

Nadia Murad asks for protection for mass graves

Nadia Murad, the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize winner, has asked the Iraqi Government and UN to take proper steps to protect mass graves from fires that have spread across the Sinjar area in northern Iraq, Ezidi 24 reports. Wild fires in the wheat and barley fields that contain mass graves have raised fears among the Yezidi community that the fires may damage mass graves and destroy evidence and human…

Daily Digest, 11 June 2019

ICMP: working on a global solution

The Hill newspaper in Washington DC carries an opinion piece today by the Chair of the International Commission on Missing persons (ICMP), Ambassador Thomas J Miller. Ambassador Miller notes that ICMP will host a series of meetings at its Headquarters in The Hague this week to tackle key aspects of the global challenge of missing persons, including efforts by states to account for migrants, refugees and displaced persons who go missing.

Bosnia and Herzegovina: exhumations at mass grave near Sarajevo

Mortal remains of twelve victims of the 1992-95 war have been exhumed from a mass grave on Mount Igman, southwest of Sarajevo, N1 reports. The mass grave was discovered last week after an investigation ordered by the State Prosecutor’s Office. The search was conducted by the Missing Persons Institute. The International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) is providing technical assistance at the excavation.

Daily Digest, 7 June 2019

Canada: missing indigenous women
The widespread killings and disappearances of indigenous women and girls in Canada constitute a “race-based genocide” that has claimed as many as 4,000 victims in the past 30 years, according to a landmark report released this week. The Guardian reports that the crisis is not confined to Canada: Indigenous women and girls in the US face estimated murder rates up to 10 times higher than the national average, and there is no comprehensive, federal database tracking cases related to the epidemic.

Mexico: missing persons figure increases in Michoacán
The Mexican newspaper, Mi Morelia reports a rising number of missing persons in recent years in the state of Michoacán. It says 400 people have gone missing in the last three months, of whom 259 have been found. State Attorney-General Alfredo Ramírez Bedolla says a forensics group is needed to identify unidentified human remains (Original article in Spanish)….

Daily Digest, 6 June 2019

Bosnia and Herzegovina: new mass grave found
The N1 news channel from southeast Europe reports that a mass grave has been found on Mount Igman near Sarajevo, believed to contain the human remains of residents of the village of Donij Hadzici who went missing in 1992. DNA tests will be undertaken to identify remains.

Ecuador: families of the missing call for better police training
The Association of Relatives and Friends of Missing Persons in Ecuador has requested a meeting with the State Attorney General to address the problem of missing persons in the country, the Ecuadorian online newspaper reports. It says there were 10,500 reported missing persons cases from 2014 to 2017 in Ecuador and families complain that police are not properly trained to carry out investigations (Original article in Spanish).

Malta: navy rescues 370 migrants from Mediterranean
AFP reports that Malta’s navy has rescued 370 migrants from the…

Daily Digest, 5 June 2019

Kuwait proposes a UN resolution on missing persons

Kuwait has begun its presidency of the UN Security Council with the aim of securing a UN resolution to find missing people and protect civilians in armed conflict, The National newspaper from UAE reports. The 15-member Council has already discussed proposals, and a draft resolution is expected this week, asking all 193 UN members to cooperate and follow legally binding procedures to find those missing in war.

Spain: exhumation of General Franco delayed

Days before the scheduled exhumation of the human remains of former Spanish dictator Francisco Franco, the Supreme Court has ordered the government to suspend its reburial plan to give relatives more time to pursue an appeal, The New York Times reports. The case has touched on key issues of individual rights and collective memorialization.

Libya: aid group urges evacuation of migrants

Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has called for…

Daily Digest, 4 June 2019

Amnesty and post-conflict justice in Zimbabwe

The Pan-African news portal African Arguments carries a story examining Zimbabwe President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s call for an open debate about the Gukurahundi massacres of the 1980s. From 1983 to 1987, security forces targeted thousands with torture, detention and summary execution in parts of the country that were deemed to be opposition strongholds. Months after the government and opposition signed a peace accord in December 1987 an amnesty was announced.

Support for families of the missing in Nepal

The Khabarhub news portal from Nepal reports that Minister for Finance Yubaraj Khatiwada has announced increased financial benefits for families of victims of enforced disappearance in the budget for fiscal year 2019-20. More than 10,000 people died in the 1996-2006 civil war in Nepal and more than 1,300 were reported as missing.

Mexico: Hidalgo appoints advisors on missing persons
The Mexican newspaper Milenio reports that the State…

Daily Digest, 3 June 2019

Canada: killings and disappearances of Indigenous women

The New York Times reports that 1,181 Indigenous women were killed or disappeared in Canada between 1980 and 2012, prompting calls for a new approach to criminal investigations in Indigenous communities.

Iraq: 27 bodies found in mass graves

The website AntiWar reports that 27 bodies have been found in mass graves 60 kilometres south of  Mosul in Iraq. The victims are believed to have been victims of Da’esh.

Colombia: families urge government to take action on missing persons

RCN Radio from Colombia reports that 10,000 of around 80,000 missing persons cases in the country have been resolved, and says families of the missing are urging the authorities to take more action to address the issue of missing persons (Original article in Spanish).

Syria: 395 cases of arbitrary arrest in May

The Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) says there have been at least…

Daily World News Digest, 31 May 2019

Venezuela: migrants disappear after shipwreck

The Trinidad and Tobago Guardian reports that the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) and the UN have expressed concern over the disappearance of Venezuelan migrants who were trying to reach Trinidad and Tobago. The IACHR has called for a search and rescue mission, noting that the two countries must undertake an investigation to locate and identify the missing.

Kenya: extrajudicial killings and forced disappearances

The Star newspaper from Kenya reports that there have been 47 extrajudicial killings and 18 forced disappearances in the country’s coastal province of Kwale, noting that investigations into these cases have not been successful.

Zimbabwe: 7 detained after rights meeting

Human Rights Watch reports that Zimbabwe state security agents have arrested seven members of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights at the Robert Mugabe International Airport in Harare. The activists were returning from a workshop in the Maldives hosted by the…

Daily World News Digest, 30 May 2019

Three more victims of Srebrenica genocide identified

Anadolu Agency reports on new identifications of victims of the Srebrenica genocide, following exhumations from mass graves in Liplje and Kamenica near Zvornik in eastern Bosnia. The identifications were made through DNA analysis, with the assistance of the International Commission on Missing persons (ICMP). (Original article in BCS).

Iraq: Identification of human remains from Sinjar

Shaafaq News reports that, following the excavation of 10 mass graves in Sinjar in northern Iraq, 138 bodies have been sent to the Medico-Legal Department in Baghdad for examination and identification. The report notes that exhumations at the remaining mass graves in Sinjar will resume after Ramadan Eid (Original article in Arabic).

Pakistan urged to investigate North Waziristan deaths

Human Rights Watch has urged the authorities in Pakistan to investigate the deaths of at least three people during violent protests in North Waziristan on 26 May. Demonstrators were protesting…