Daily World News Digest, 27 April 2016

China rejects EU criticism of Hong Kong policy

Voice of America carried a story on 26 April saying that EU criticism of China’s rule over Hong Kong is unfounded, China’s Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday, after an EU report called the disappearance of five booksellers the most serious challenge to the “one country, two systems” principle since the city’s return to Chinese control. The disappearances of the five publishers who sold books critical of Chinese leaders had provoked concern that China was using shadowy tactics to erode the formula under which Hong Kong has been governed since its return to China from British rule in 1997 one country, two systems principle into “serious doubt.” http://bit.ly/1SM9Tj5

Confusion reigns over number of missing after Ecuador earthquake

El País carried a story on 26 April saying that Ecuador’s authorities say 130 people are still missing 10 days after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake shook the country, although reports by victims’ families on social media indicate the number could be much higher. People Locator, a website endorsed by the Interior Ministry, lists 2,200 unsolved cases. This figure is an estimate, says the site’s developer Esteban Mendieta, adding that staff at the country’s missing persons registry are also combing through the data. There are duplicate entries and some have not been updated, even though relatives have found the missing person.” http://bit.ly/1VBwtLD

Indonesia moves to investigate anti-communist atrocities

The New York Times carried a story on 26 April saying that Indonesia’s president has instructed his government to investigate the bloody anti-Communist purges of the mid-1960s. Haris Azhar, the head of the Commission for Missing Persons and Victims of Violence, said his organization alone had collected evidence of at least 16 mass graves containing as many as 40 bodies each, mostly on the main Indonesian island of Java, but also on Bali and Sulawesi. He said on Tuesday that the government had begun contacting his group and others about the data. Another crucial issue, he says, is whether people who come forward will be protected from potential reprisals. http://nyti.ms/21eUpnU

One year on, Burundians pay the price of entrenched human rights crisis

Amnesty International USA issued a statement on 26 April saying that one year on from the start of the Burundi crisis, the human rights situation in the country continues to deteriorate and accountability for horrific acts of violence remains elusive. According to the UN, at least 474 people have been killed and more than 250,000 have fled the country, most of them to refugee camps in neighboring Rwanda and Tanzania. The worst of the violence took place on 11 December 2015. http://bit.ly/1SJro08

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.