Daily World News Digest, 2 November 2017

 Where are Syria’s disappeared, detained, and kidnapped?

Negotiations at the international and local levels to end the conflict in Syria “have marginalized demands to uncover the fate” of victims of enforced disappearance, an article published by Human Rights Watch argues. It notes that “government forces and non-state armed groups have disappeared, detained, and kidnapped tens of thousands”. Earlier this month, 500 detainees in Homs Central Prison announced a hunger strike to demand their release, while Syrians who have escaped from Da’esh and are now in Europe are seeking information about the kidnapping, detention, and execution of family members. http://bit.ly/2ygcvBr

Filmmaker documents Syria’s disappeared

British journalist and filmmaker, Sara Afshar spent 18 months investigating some of the 65,000 people forcibly “disappeared” in the Syrian conflict following stories of detention, government defectors, and international war crime investigators on their campaigns for the release of the disappeared. They are the basis for her documentary, Syria’s Disappeared. Mariam Hallaq is the subject of one of the stories; her 25-year old son, a student at Damascus University and a human rights activist, disappeared in November 2012. Hallaq says her best-case scenario is that her son lies in a mass grave, and DNA analysis might one day identify his remains. http://chi.mg/2iUixks

Family interests “impede war crimes tribunal vote” in Colombia

More than a quarter of the members of Colombia’s senate have claimed they are under an impediment with regard to casting a vote on the setting up of a war crimes tribunal, as they have family members who were either victims or participants in the armed conflict. Of the 102 senators, 27 said there was an impediment to voting because it would have legal consequences for relatives either because they were victims of the FARC or accused of war crimes. http://bit.ly/2zbsoIS

FARC leader announces run in Colombia’s 2018 presidential race

FARC leader Rodrigo Londoño, a.k.a. “Timochenko,” has announced that he will take part in the 2018 presidential elections. Londoño said his running mate will be Imelda Daza, a social democrat who has been living in exile in Sweden since the 1990s. The FARC’s congressional campaign will be led by “Ivan Marquez,” who was a congressman in the 1980s. The FARC said last year that it would not take part in the 2018 elections but endorse a mainstream candidate. Whether Londoño is allowed to enter the race before being submitted to transitional justice will depend on a decision by Congress, which is reviewing a transitional justice bill. http://bit.ly/2inFKaM

Activists say Kenyan police have killed 13 protesters

Kenyan police have killed 13 protesters in opposition strongholds since Thursday’s repeat presidential election, which the main opposition group boycotted, according to local activist group. The Independent Medico Legal Unit said it recorded 64 cases of use of excessive force by police, including 34 people being shot, between 25 and 28 October. http://bit.ly/2xODKio

Security forces reportedly kill 28 protesters in Eritrea

Security forces have killed at least 28 people in protests in Asmara, the Eritrean capital, according to an opposition group. Unrest was triggered by the government’s arrest of Haj Mussa, honorary president of the Al Diaa school in the city’s Akriya neighborhood. http://bit.ly/2zZ19hI

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.