Daily World News Digest, 21 December 2016

 Iraq: identifying victims buried in mass graves

Business Insider carried an AFP story yesterday describing dozens of mass graves discovered in areas around Iraq that have been recaptured from Da’esh. Speaking at one of the sites, Fawaz Abdulabbas, deputy head of the International Commission on Missing Persons program in Iraq, said, “It really is a crime scene. Between 80 and 100 bodies are here, including those of women and children.” Now investigators face the enormous task of piecing together details of what happened to victims, and determining who they were. http://read.bi/2hZKZfJ


Wives of missing Thai, Lao activists seek action over disappearances

Reuters reported yesterday that the wives of three prominent Southeast Asian human rights campaigners who went missing after being detained by the authorities have united to urge Laos and Thailand to end impunity over forced disappearances. All three women have become vocal critics of forced disappearances in a region where activists highlighting abuses over human, labor and land rights routinely face threats and violence. Some are gunned down, harassed through lawsuits, or simply “disappeared”. http://reut.rs/2h9bzEL


Refugee boat sinks off Turkey’s western coast

Dailysabah carried an article yesterday stating that five Afghan migrants including four children and one woman, were killed while eight others were rescued when a boat they boarded sank off the Aegean coast of Turkey on Tuesday. Migrants were trying to reach the nearby Greek islands aboard the small boat after they departed from Ayvalık, a small town in the western Turkish province of Balıkesir. The cause of the capsizing that took place near Maden Island is not clear. Authorities are yet to determine if more migrants went missing during the capsizing of the boat. http://bit.ly/2hDhPFJ


Families of missing Central American migrants seek answers

ThePulitzerCenter released an article yesterday on the migratuion by tens of thousands of Central Americans through Mexico in a desperate bid to reach the United States. An untold number never make it. When they disappear, families endure heartbreak and disappointment trying to find out from afar what happened. But a group of intrepid mothers, wives and fathers from Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua are taking action, traversing Mexico as they search for answers often beyond the public view in a land of clandestine graves and brutal drug wars. Facing long odds they visit prisons, march through cities, question politicians in attempt to find clues. http://bit.ly/2hq2oh5


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.