The Hague, 2 September 2020 – A new €2 million grant from Germany will enable the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) to help find missing persons in Iraq and Syria.
“Germany has been a longstanding supporter of ICMP and its global programs. ICMP’s work in Iraq and in the context of Syria is key to upholding human rights and strengthening the rule of law, which is a cornerstone of Germany’s foreign policy,” said ICMP Director-General Kathryne Bomberger. “States are responsible for locating all missing persons, and for investigating the circumstances of their disappearance regardless of their ethnic, religious or national background.”
Germany’s Ambassador to the Netherlands, Dirk Brengelmann, added: “The ICMP is supporting governments to address the global issue of missing persons, providing unique technical assistance in situations all over the world. The loss of their loved ones caused by armed conflict, natural disasters or similar causes leads to immense…
The Hague, 28 August 2020: World leaders must end the double standard on missing persons, International Commission on Missing Persons Director-General Kathryne Bomberger said ahead of the International Day of the Disappeared, recognized worldwide on 30 August.
“States are legally responsible for investigating missing persons cases, and they are responsible for securing the rights of all families of the missing to justice, truth and reparations. These rights are non-negotiable and certainly do not depend on the income level, nationality, skin color, gender, ethnicity or religion of the missing persons and their families. They are the rights of the poor as well as the rich, of minority groups as well as majority groups. And they are the rights of women as well as men.”
Ms. Bomberger said in an op-ed published today in the European Observer.
“With huge numbers of missing persons around the world – in Syria, in Iraq, in…
Bogota, 27 August 2020: The achievements and challenges of more than 100 associations of families of the missing in Colombia, and other civil society organizations that are working on the country’s enormous missing persons challenge are detailed in a mapping report released by the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) today.
The publication, the first of its kind for Colombia, compiles ICMP data on the work of civil society organizations, including family associations of missing persons and other networks that are involved in the arduous effort to account for the more than 120,000 persons who are estimated missing from Colombia’s more than 50 years of conflict. It was launched as part of ICMP’s activities to commemorate the International Day of the Disappeared, observed globally on 30 August.
“This mapping acknowledges and appreciates the persistence and driving force that families of missing persons provide to national actors and members of the…
By Laura Manrique
Bogota, 14 August 2020: Six civil society organizations that cooperate with the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) in Colombia have agreed to take part in the creation of a pilot central data repository for information related to missing persons in Colombia, a key step that enables the organizations to strengthen their data collection processes and to ensure that they do not duplicate efforts.
All of the participating organizations – Funvides (Bogotá), Credhos (Barrancabermeja), Poderpaz (Cúcuta), CDR (Cali), Favidesc (Florencia) and Madres de la Candelaria (Medellín) – have been using ICMP Identification Data Management System (iDMS) to handle the data they have collected in a responsible, transparent, safe, effective and efficient way. Their participation in the pilot enables them to share information with each other, allowing for a more efficient data management process.
The organizations agreed to take part in the pilot during an ICMP meeting focused on data…
BAGDHAD 13 August 2020: The International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) this week signed cooperation agreements with the Mass Grave Affairs and Protection Directorate of the Martyr’s Foundation and the Medico Legal Directorate of the Ministry of Health and Environment, adding to an agreement signed with the Ministry of Justice in late July.
“The agreements affirm and strengthen our cooperation with ICMP,” said Hassan Al Kabbai, First Deputy Speaker in Iraq’s Parliament, who hosted the 12 August signing ceremony. “We look forward to the results our closer cooperation will bring – I will follow developments closely.”
ICMP Director-General Kathryne Bomberger said:
“The agreements form the basis of ICMP’s continued to support to Iraq in developing and implementing a sustainable strategy to account for all Iraq’s missing and disappeared persons in an impartial and transparent manner.”
Iraqi authorities estimate that 250,000 to 1 million persons are missing in the country. ICMP has worked with…
By Yasmine Khalaf
28 July 2020: A collection of films and other advocacy material created by Syrian civil society organizations are featured in a new online exhibit organized by the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP).
The materials aim to make families of the many who have disappeared in the Syrian conflict aware of their rights, and what they can do to support a search for their missing relatives. The 11 organizations created the products with support from the ICMP, which awarded them small grants to finance the projects and offered workshops and other support to help the organizations strengthen their skills.
“We have the right to know where they are,” a woman gazing straight into the camera says in one of the films, produced by the Syria Legal Network.
The title of online exhibit, “In Their Absence”, was inspired by a book collecting interviews by families of the missing on the challenges…
The Hague 17 July 2020: The International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) welcomes the appointment of the members of the Lebanon National Commission for the Missing and Forcibly Disappeared, who have been sworn in before the President of the Republic, General Michel Aoun.
“These appointments underline recognition of the importance of resolving the issue of missing persons as an opportunity to assert state responsibility, and thus enhance confidence in public institutions on this issue,” said ICMP Director-General Kathryne Bomberger. “As the only international organization working exclusively on the issue of missing persons, ICMP stands ready to support Lebanon’s efforts to address this issue in an effective and impartial way, and to help families of the missing to secure truth and justice.”
For years, family associations and civil society have worked to keep the missing persons issue in public view, and together with NGOs they have called on the authorities to launch…
10 July 2020: To commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Srebrenica Genocide, the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP), the Srebrenica Memorial Center and BIH artist Šejla Kamerić launched an art project that casts light on the scientific process of finding and identifying war victims in a mission for truth and justice.
The project, titled Forensic Archive: From One Learn All will be developed in coming years and will feature a permanent exhibition at the Srebrenica Memorial and a digital platform. The installation projected on the walls of the Potocari Battery Factory – which houses the Srebrenica Memorial – on 8 and 9 July, ahead of the 11 July anniversary of the Genocide was generously supported by the Government of the United Kingdom and is a part of the launch of the project.
By using different media in a crossover between science and art, the project presents the scientific facts on the basis of…
Baghdad, Iraq, 15 June 2020: Relatives of the hundreds of thousands of persons missing in Iraq often face difficulties in finding reliable information on what they can do to ensure that the disappearances of their family members are investigated. To help them navigate what can be a complex, challenging and lengthy process, the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) is developing a guide to Iraq’s approach to account for missing persons.
ICMP has worked with the authorities in Iraq since 2005, supporting them in work to account for all missing persons, regardless of their sectarian or national background, or the period of time in which they disappeared. ICMP also helps Iraqi families of missing persons access their rights.
The ICMP Iraq guide will explain the missing persons process in Iraq and outline the various steps involved in searching for and identifying missing persons in the country. It will highlight the roles…
By: Saša Kulukčija
Tuzla, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 5 June 2020: The painstaking process of identifying victims of the 1995 Srebrenica genocide was the focus of a visit today by EU Special Representative Ambassador Johann Sattler, Head of the European Union Delegation in Bosnia and Herzegovina to see the work of the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP).
At the Podrinje Identification Project facility, Ambassador Sattler, who was accompanied by the Head of ICMP’s Western Balkans Program, Matthew Holiday, observed work by ICMP staff to assist Bosnia and Herzegovina in identifying human remains from the genocide. Using DNA-based identification methods, ICMP has assisted in the identification of 7,000 of the more than 8,000 persons who were missing following the genocide. The work continues to find new mass and clandestine graves related to Srebrenica.
“With the EU’s financial and political support, ICMP will continue to help the BIH authorities to fulfill their obligations to…