Daily Digest, 27 June 2019

Pedersen on accounting for the missing in Syria

Reuters reports on the latest efforts by newly-appointed UN Syria envoy Geir Pedersen to forge international consensus on next steps to end the eight-year conflict. In an interview, Pedersen says he has pressed the government of President Bashar al-Assad and the opposition Syrian National Commission on the importance of tackling the issue of people who have been detained or abducted or are missing, and he has appealed to them for “bigger unilateral steps on this”. https://reut.rs/2KGxjrP

Mexico: a mother’s long struggle for truth

La Croix International reports on the efforts of a mother from the northern Mexico state of Chihuahua who has spent the last seven years looking for her son. She comments that the new government of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador is “much more aware of the magnitude of the problem of the missing,” and adds that “The federal government is listening now. Their teams are very accessible. They are even participating in research.” https://bit.ly/2KGKMzY

China: facial recognition to find missing children

The Daily Telegraph reports that police in China have been able to find missing children using facial recognition software. Four children who had been missing for around 10 years have been identified using the new technology, the paper says. https://bit.ly/2XBFFXM

North Korea: human remains not returned to families

Family members of people executed in North Korea or of convicts who have died while incarcerated, are not typically informed about the final resting place of their relatives, the Diplomat magazine from Washington reports. The Seoul-based NGO Transitional Justice Working Group (TJWG) says the bodies of those who are accused of crimes and then executed are typically taken away by the Ministry of People’s Security (MPS) for disposal. The report says that the practice of disposing of bodies in clandestine locations is widespread in North Korea. https://bit.ly/2ZWMXTv

Items in the Daily World News Digest are summaries of published reports relevant to the issue of missing persons, compiled by ICMP staff. These items do not necessarily reflect the position of ICMP.