Daily World News Digest, 1 December 2016

Mass graves uncovered in Iraq

The New York Times carried a story yesterday about the long legacy of mass graves in Iraq, stretching back further than the Islamic State to the time of Saddam Hussein. “The International Commission on Missing Persons, a Netherlands-based organization, has estimated that up to a million Iraqis have gone missing in recent history.” That encompasses the war between Iran and Iraq, the mass killings ordered by Mr. Hussein after a Shiite uprising in 1991, the Iraqi government’s Anfal chemical-weapon strikes against the Kurds in the late 1980s, and the more recent sectarian civil war of the last decade. ICMP notes on its website that there are “millions of relatives of the missing in Iraq who struggle with the uncertainty surrounding the fate of a loved one.” http://nyti.ms/2gIR9Dk

Rwanda probes possible role of French officials in genocide 

Reuters published an article yesterday about an inquiry launched in Rwanda into the possible role of at least 20 French military and other officials in the 1994 genocide, the prosecutor general said on Wednesday, a move that will deepen already strained relations with Paris. Rwanda has frequently had diplomatic rows with France since the genocide, when about 800,000 mostly ethnic minority Tutsis and moderates from the Hutu majority population were killed. Rwandan officials have long accused France of supporting the former government of President Juvenal Habyarimana, a Hutu whose death when his plane was shot down in 1994 sparked the bloodbath. http://reut.rs/2gLnKGa

Mexico: journalists murdered with impunity

The Daily Mail publishes an article today about the killing and kidnapping of journalists in Mexico, a country it says is one of the most dangerous in the world for journalists. The report singles out Veracruz as Mexico’s deadliest state for members of the media. In the last six years, 18 journalists have been killed in Veracruz, three of them this year. Another three have disappeared. In the same period, another 19 journalists were killed or disappeared in the rest of Mexico — eight so far this year. In nearly every case, journalists have been murdered with impunity. Press advocates can name only one of those 37 cases that has resulted in a conviction, and there are many reasons to believe that the man now in jail is not the killer. http://dailym.ai/2gLkD12                                      

Indian authorities release prominent Kashmir rights activist

 The Daily Mail reported yesterday that authorities in Indian-controlled Kashmir released a prominent human rights activist from prison Wednesday after a court ruled that his detention was illegal. Police freed Khurram Parvez after the court ordered his release five days earlier. Indian authorities charged Parvez in September under the Public Safety Act, which allows detentions for up to two years without trial. The court said Parvez had been imprisoned arbitrarily and that authorities had abused their power by ordering his detention. http://dailym.ai/2gBrDwJ

Court instructs officials to assist Pakistani prisoners abroad

The Express Tribune reports today that the Islamabad High Court has instructed relevant government departments to respond to cases involving Pakistanis outside the country wgho are, it says, “facing incarceration and even executions abroad, especially in the Middle East, without being provided access to due process, legal assistance, impartial translators and a lack of consular assistance from Pakistani diplomatic missions abroad. Convicted of crimes, these Pakistanis are subsequently executed without prior information and buried in mass graves as if they never existed.” http://bit.ly/2fUauQS

Items in 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.