Daily World News Digest, 25 September 2015

Pena Nieto promises new prosecutor for missing persons investigations

Deutsche Welle reported today that Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has said he will create a new prosecutor’s office to look into the thousands of missing citizens. His announcement came after a meeting with the families of 43 students who went missing last year. “The case is not closed,” President Pena Nieto told families gathered for a meeting with him on Thursday as he announced the creation of a new prosecutor’s office especially for Mexico’s missing persons. The country’s chief prosecutor would also create a team of forensic experts to re-examine evidence and crime scenes. “We are on the same side,” the president said. “You and I are looking for the same thing.” However, he stopped short of announcing a new probe into the existing investigation of the 43 students who went missing last year. http://bit.ly/1KTGnSH

Pakistan Missing Persons Commission seeks permanent status

The Nation, a daily from Pakistan, reported today that members of the Commission on Missing Persons will ask Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to grant the Commission permanent status. The Commission, headed by Justice Javed Iqbal, has disposed of over 1,300 complicated cases from all over Pakistan and attributed responsibility to some institutions and groups. It has reportedly received a large number of cases from the Supreme Court and other institutions for further investigation. http://bit.ly/1LBgqba

#Reúne campaign in Peru looks for support in search of missing persons

The Peru this Week news portal carried a story on 24 September saying that more than 5,000 citizens lost between two and eight family members between 1980 and 2000 in Peru, according to #Reúne. And due to legislative obstacles, families experience great difficulty when searching for their lost loved ones. #Reúne is a campaign organized by multiple groups to push for approval of a law that permits the search for thousands of missing persons as a result of the Shining Path era violence in the 1980s and 1990s. This law would make it possible in the first instance to compile an official list of missing persons. The bill was approved by the executive in May 2014 but has not yet been sent to Congress. http://bit.ly/1izFkw3

Colombia: Agreement must guarantee justice for millions of victims of the armed conflict

Amnesty International issued a statement on 24 September saying that the agreement on transitional justice signed on Wednesday by the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) brings a ray of hope to the millions of victims of human rights violations and abuses committed during Colombia’s 50-year long armed conflict. However, vague definitions and potential amnesties raise fears that not all human rights abusers will face justice, Amnesty said. “Colombia has a duty to investigate and, if there is sufficient admissible evidence, prosecute all those suspected of criminal responsibility for crimes under international law. This obligation is non-negotiable, even in the context of a peace process,” the statement says. The FARC and the government have agreed to set up a “Special Jurisdiction for Peace” consisting of a tribunal and special courts with Colombian judges and magistrates chosen by both the FARC and the government, as well as some limited participation by foreign experts. This judicial process will, however, focus only on “the most serious and representative cases” and, in the case of the FARC, only on those deemed the “most responsible”. http://bit.ly/1Fkkpbd

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.