Daily World News Digest, 15 April 2016

Nigeria Chibok girls shown alive in Boko Haram video

The BBC carried a story on 14 April saying that friends and family members of Nigerian schoolgirls kidnapped two years ago say they have identified some of them in a new video obtained by CNN. The footage, apparently filmed in December, shows 15 girls in black robes identifying themselves. The girls were taken from a school in the town of Chibok by members of the Islamist group Boko Haram.  Relatives of the girls marched in the capital, Abuja, on Thursday, the second anniversary of their abduction. The footage of the girls is the first to be seen since May 2014, when around 100 of them were shown in a video. http://bbc.in/22vYMtL

Nigeria: Two years after Chibok abductions it is time to #BringBackOurGirls

Amnesty International issued a statement on 14 April, on the second anniversary of the armed group’s abductions, saying that all those abducted by Boko Haram must be released and those whose lives have been devastated by the armed group must receive support and justice. “Few of us can begin to comprehend the suffering of parents who have not seen their daughters for two years,” said Country Director of Amnesty International Nigeria, M.K. Ibrahim. Amnesty International is calling on Boko Haram to stop targeting and killing civilians and for the Nigerian government to take all possible lawful steps to ensure their protection and restore security in the north-east. The international community should also continue to assist Nigeria’s government in addressing the threat posed by Boko Haram. http://bit.ly/1NrVPDG

Burundi group blames police for rising disappearances

The Washington Post carried a story on 13 April saying that when security officials in Burundi show up looking for someone, they don’t even have to produce an arrest warrant. And when they take a suspect away, the terrified family members left behind just hope their relative will be held at a known jail. Amid the violence, in which more than 400 people have been killed since last April, an online network of Burundian activists is trying to bring international attention to what it says are rising incidents of people being disappeared by local police and intelligence agents, some of whom then return to extort huge sums of money from families desperate to get their loved ones back. The Burundian government has repeatedly denied it tortures and kills civilians. http://wapo.st/1YwSJUJ

Missing Mexican students abducted in front of federal police, witness says

The Guardian reported today that a witness to the disappearance of 43 Mexican students in 2014 has told investigators that federal and municipal police were present when the youths were forced from their bus, according to the country’s national human rights commission. The new testimony suggests that federal officers at least allowed local police to abduct some of the students – who have never been found – and may have actively participated in one of Mexico’s most notorious recent human rights atrocities, said commission member José Larrieta Carrasco. The commission urged the federal attorney general’s office to investigate Huitzuco police and find the identities of the two federal police who were at the scene. http://bit.ly/1qL1DmR

Nepal Commission starts registering complaints about disappearances

The Asia News Network news portal reported today that more than a year after it was formed, the Commission of Investigation on enforced disappearances (CIEDP) in Nepal started receiving complaints from families of conflict victims on Thursday amid questions about the credibility of the process and the ability of the transitional justice mechanism to deliver justice to the victims and their families. A total of 15 complaints were registered on the first day, raising doubts about whether information about complaint registration was properly disseminated. According to the CIEDP the number of people who still remain missing is around 2,200.  http://bit.ly/1T8zsYp

Ancient Grave with 80 bodies found near Athens may be linked to Cylonian Affair

The Greek Reporter news portal reported on 14 April that archaeologists digging in the area of the Faliron Delta, a coastal area in southern Athens, which served as a port for Athens in classical times, have discovered an ancient mass grave containing 80 bodies, placed side by side, some of whom are shackled, an antiquities curator said. The importance of the findings, which came to light during the past 20 days and were found at a depth of a mere 2.5 meters, is that they can be safely dated, because of the presence of two trefoil jugs discovered nearby, placing them at the third quarter of the 7th century BC. This date may connect the skeletons with the Cylonian affair. http://bit.ly/23JQYak

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.