Daily World News Digest, 26 July 2017

A motion filed to restart Srebrenica trial

Balkan Insight reported on 24 July that Serbia’s war crimes prosecutor, Snezana Stanojkovic, filed a motion on Monday to restart a landmark trial of eight former Serb policemen for the Srebrenica massacres after it was halted when an appeals court dismissed the charges because they were not filed by the authorized prosecutor, since the Serbian war crimes prosecutor’s position was vacant at the time. The men are accused of organizing and participating in the shooting of more than 1,300 Bosniak civilians in an agricultural warehouse in the village of Kravica near Srebrenica in July 1995. So far more than 1,300 civilians who were massacred in Kravica have been identified. Their bodies were found in several mass graves in Bosnia and Herzegovina. http://bit.ly/2tIYBFW

Enforced disappearance in Mindanao schools

The Interaksyon news portal from the Philippines reports today that lawmakers and Human Rights Watch have criticized President Rodrigo Duterte’s threat to order the military to bomb schools that have been set up to serve indigenous people, lumad, in Mindanao. On Monday, Duterte repeated military claims claims that schools set up by civil society and religious organizations for indigenous communities operated illegally and actually taught “subversion [and] communism.” The Save Our Schools Network says there have been at least 83 attacks on 89 lumad schools since July last year, ranging from threats against students and teachers, the occupation of the schools and other civilian structures by soldiers, to extrajudicial killings and at least one case of enforced disappearance. http://bit.ly/2uwDMfD

Extrajudicial killings in Egypt

The Middle East Monitor carried a story yesterday saying that the Egyptian authorities have carried out 54 extrajudicial killings of people suspected of belonging to movements opposed to the military government. It says most of the victims had already been subjected to enforced disappearance and had been believed by family and human rights groups to be in detention. “Since 29 Coptic Christian Egyptians were killed in a terrorist attack on a bus in May, the Egyptian interior ministry has executed 54 persons in 14 operations that took place in seven provinces; Cairo, Giza, Alexandria, Ismailiya, Assiout, Fayyoum and North Sinai.” http://bit.ly/2vI529A

Unexplained disappearances in Malaysia

The Malaysian Insight news portal reported on Tuesday that supporters and relatives of a 62-year old pastor who was abducted in Kuala Lumpur in February have questioned the latest assertion by Malaysian police that the abduction could have been related to people trafficking. Raymond Toh’s abduction was one of several disappearances in Malaysia in the last year, which police have so far been unable to solve. “Now the police are saying it’s a trafficking case,” said Rama Ramanathan, a member of the Citizen Action Group On Enforced Disappearance (Caged). “Raymond is above 60 years old and why do they need to carry out a military-style abduction for such a person?” Toh’s wife, Susanna Liew, has learned about developments in the case from the media. A spokesperson for the family told The Malaysian Insight today there has been no effort on the part of the police to reach out to the family to arrange for a proper update. http://bit.ly/2uvQwmw

Reconciliation and memorialization in Sri Lanka

The Asia Times carries a story today about reconciliation and memorialization efforts in Sri Lanka. It says that in the north of the country “local people remain skeptical about development-oriented, top-down reconciliation projects that are largely conceived and implemented by the bureaucracy and security forces. Among recurrent local concerns are missing persons, military land occupation and memorialization. Critical observers argue that until these core issues are addressed, token projects will do little to assuage Tamil frustrations with the state.” http://bit.ly/2tIST6W

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.