Daily World News Digest, 3 August 2017

Kenya: Calls for judicial commission to inquire into enforced disappearances

The Star from Kenya reported today that former Law Society of Kenya CEO Apollo Mboya wants a court to compel the state to appoint a judicial commission of inquiry into enforced disappearances and extrajudicial killings. Mboya has called upon human rights organizations documenting more than 300 cases of individuals who have gone missing while in the hands of security agencies since February 2008. Mboya said the commission should be constituted with a view to bringing to account those responsible for the crimes. He also wants the state to help constitute a commission of independent investigators capable of determining whether the disappearances or deaths occurred as a result of illegal use of force. http://bit.ly/2vvuL8k

HRW calls on Turkey to investigate Ankara disappearances

HRW today published a letter to Turkish Justice Minister Abdülhamit Gül calling on the authorities urgently to investigate the abduction and possible enforced disappearance of at least four men in Ankara since March 2017. Rights groups argue that similarities between the abductions and the fact that one of the men was subsequently found in police custody are credible grounds to believe that the men may be victims of enforced disappearances by Turkish security forces or law enforcement agents. The authorities have yet to respond to the allegations of abductions and possible enforced disappearances reported to prosecutors this year by lawyers acting for the families of missing people, HRW said.  http://bit.ly/2uYZlpd

China: alleged enforced disappearance of Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo’s widow

The Guardian reported today that Chinese authorities are guilty of the enforced disappearance of Liu Xia, the wife of late Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo, according to the couple’s US lawyer. Almost three weeks after the Chinese dissident and Nobel peace prize winner died in custody, his widow’s precise whereabouts are a mystery. Liu Xia was last seen on 15 July when authorities released photographs showing her attending her husband’s controversial burial at sea, which supporters suspect was devised to deny them a place to remember the democracy icon and his ideas. http://bit.ly/2faWpjT

UN: arbitrary arrests of Venezuela’s opposition leaders is illegal

Voice of America reported today that UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein has called for the immediate release of two prominent Venezuelan opposition leaders who were taken into custody on Tuesday. The High Commissioner’s spokeswoman, Ravina Shamdasani, said the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has declared the detention of both Leopoldo Lopez and Antonio Ledezma to be arbitrary. She said they never should have been arrested. http://bit.ly/2u6H4HO

UN Security Council express concern over extrajudicial killings in Burundi

The National Post from Canada reported on Wednesday that the UN Security Council has expressed alarm over reports of torture and extrajudicial killings in Burundi and about an increasing number of refugees who are fleeing the tiny East African nation, now totaling over 416,000 people. Burundi has been plagued by sporadic violence since April 2015 and more than 500 people have been killed, according to the UN. The Security Council said it remains “deeply concerned” at the political situation and the government’s failure to implement a resolution adopted last year calling for the deployment of 228 UN police and human rights monitors. http://bit.ly/2vvrplx

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.