Daily World News Digest, 24 December 2015

Friends fear for Chinese Christian lawyer spending Christmas behind bars

The Guardian carried a story today saying that in late August, the Christian human rights lawyer, Zhang Kai, was snatched in eastern China as he prepared to denounce a Communist party cross-removal campaign to the United States ambassador-at-large for religious freedom. He has not been seen since. In the years leading up to Zhang’s enforced disappearance, the 36-year-old lawyer had built a reputation as an uncompromising defender of China’s needy and poor. On 25 August, the day before Zhang was due to meet David Saperstein, the US ambassador-at-large for religious freedom, the Chinese lawyer was spirited into custody by police. http://bit.ly/1TiC0lJ

Mass graves for ‘’300 Shia Nigerians’’ in Zaria

The BBC reported on 23 December that Nigeria’s military killed and quickly buried the bodies of at least 300 Shia Muslims in an unjustified attack in the northern Zaria city earlier this month. The bodies were buried without family members’ permission. Military spokesman Brig General Rabe Abubakar told the BBC the army had not killed anyone. The Shia have rejected a committee set up by the government to look into the incident, saying it would be biased. Nigeria’s Islamic spiritual leader, the Sultan of Sokoto, has warned that the raids on the sect, known as the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN), could spark a new insurgency.  http://bbc.in/1U6sEcY

Junta regime in Egypt kills 24 students, jails 1010 more

Ikhwan Web, a news portal from Egypt issued a news on 23 December saying that in 2015, the ruling regime in Egypt committed many forms of violations, bans and restrictions against students in Egyptian universities and institutes, with ferocious campaigns of wholesale arbitrary arrests and mass military trials in ‘’special’’ courts for students opposed to the regime. Enforced disappearance crimes were routinely committed almost every day against university students. The illegitimate regime in Egypt has shown blatant, total disregard for all international laws and conventions and Egyptian laws. Freedom Seekers Monitor (FSM) FSM monitored 400 cases where junta authorities committed the heinous crime of enforced disappearances for varying lengths of time: more than one crime of enforced disappearance a day on average. http://bit.ly/1J67gE0

UK calls on Houthi-Saleh militias to release detainees in Yemen

Emirates 24/7 News reported today that United Kingdom called on Houthi and Saleh militias to release all those unlawfully detained, including the Yemeni Defence Minister, Mahmoud al Subaihi, and for the human rights of all Yemenis to be respected. “In addition, we should all be worried by the continuing arbitrary detentions and enforced disappearances of NGO workers, activists, protestors and journalists. These repressive measures by the Houthis are not only closing down the democratic space, they are also denying Yeminis the fundamental rights to which we are all entitled,” Ambassador Matthew Rycroft of the UK Mission to the UN said in a statement at the UN Security Council briefing on Yemen. http://bit.ly/1QJxWxm

The relatives of missing migrants find joy and pain while searching in Mexico

Vice news carried a story on 23 December saying that Elvira Mendoza Rios is looking for her brother Manuel. He left their small village in Guatemala nine months ago and went missing a few weeks. He wanted to get to Florida to work. Elvira was talking towards the end of a three week trip around Mexico along with 40 other relatives of migrants from Central America who went missing during their journey north. The trip — known as the Caravan of Mothers of Disappeared Migrants — stems from the desperation of relatives of missing Central Americans. At a meeting in the Mexican Senate earlier this month, Elvira and other members of the group asked the legislators to address the problem of missing migrants within a proposed new law on forced disappearance. http://bit.ly/1QYmH2v

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.