Daily World News Digest, 12 June 2015

Abductions on the rise in Kashmir

The Kashmir Monitor reports today that kidnapping cases are increasing, with two cases being reported on average every day. As many as 761 abduction cases have been reported by police in 2014 in the state. In 2013 in Kashmir, 638 kidnapping incidents were reported, while in 2012 the figure was 694. Police registered 471 abduction cases in 2008 and 579 cases in 2009. “From past few years mostly youth get kidnapped. There are only few cases when an elderly person is missing,” a police source said. The report concluded that Jammu and Kashmir has emerged as one of the most violent places in India after New Delhi, Jharkhand and Chattisgarh. http://bit.ly/1GxRJtm

UN: Civilians at risk as Darfur attacks surge

Human Rights Watch issued a statement on 11 June calling on the UN Security Council to require more vigorous civilian protection and better human rights reporting when it renews the mandate of the Darfur peacekeeping mission in June 2015. On 10 June, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Edmond Mulet briefed the Security Council and relayed the Secretary-General’s recommendation to renew the African Union/United Nations Hybrid Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) for 12 months. Sudan is pressing for a drawdown of UMAMID. At least 500,000 people have been displaced by fighting in Darfur over the past 16 months, according to UN statistics, due to the surging conflict, violent attacks on civilians, indiscriminate bombing, and widespread abuses by Sudanese government forces and allied militia. The scale of displacement is comparable to what it was at the peak of the conflict in 2003-2005, and underscores the urgent need for the Security Council to reinvigorate the hybrid mission’s role in protecting civilians, Human Rights Watch said. Since February 2014 Human Rights Watch and other organizations have documented a sharp increase in the scale and gravity of laws-of-war violations in Darfur. Abuses have included the destruction and burning of villages, rampant sexual violence against women and girls, and massive forced displacement of civilians. http://bit.ly/1QP1LYj

Russia “could block Srebrenica resolution”

The b92 news portal and Belgrade based newspaper “Danas” reported on 12 June that Russia could veto a UN Security Council resolution on Srebrenica prepared by Britain. Unnamed sources said it was “necessary for Serbia to express its opposition to the proposed document, in order to obtain Moscow’s support.” Serbian diplomats as reported to have characterized the resolution as “a kind of pressure on Serbia, especially in light of the continuing process of solving the Kosovo issue.” The article noted that “the resolution would declare 11 July a day of remembrance of more than 8,000 Muslim men and boys killed by Serb forces in 1995.” http://bit.ly/1S9PAYF

Nepal landslides kill at least 21, with others trapped or missing

The New York Times reported on 12 June that landslides caused by heavy rains struck several remote villages in eastern Nepal overnight on Thursday, killing at least 21 people, a local official said. At least 27 other people are missing, and several are known to be trapped. Officials fear that landslides could be particularly bad this season because of the major earthquake that struck Nepal in April, killing more than 8,700 people and leaving the terrain more unstable. Mr. Bhattarai said an estimated 150 security personnel, including Nepalese Army soldiers, were taking part in the landslide rescue operations. http://nyti.ms/1MNSyiw

Missing migrants on US-Mexico border

TakePart reported on 11 June that when a U.S. citizen files a missing persons report with the local police department, a series of events is usually triggered: DNA samples can be taken, key information is analyzed using an international database, and psychosocial support is often offered. But for many Central American families whose loved ones have gone missing while crossing the U.S.–Mexico border, that process is virtually nonexistent. “The position of these families makes their search incredibly difficult because it’s across international borders, or just borders of invisibility and marginalization within the United States,” says Robin Reineke, cofounder and executive director of the Colibri Center for Human Rights in Tuscon, Arizona. Formed in 2006 and located in the Pima County medical examiner’s office, Colibri is a nonprofit NGO that assists families by collecting detailed missing persons reports and working with forensic scientists to help identify those who have died along the U.S.–Mexico border. With more than 2,000 records on missing persons, the center’s database is the largest of its kind in the nation and the only one that is neither country- nor region-specific and open to all families regardless of citizenship or nationality. http://bit.ly/1KJtRES

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.