Daily World News Digest, 3 March 2016

Diplomats discuss the missing persons issue in The Hague

El Pais Costa Rica reported on 2 March that Colombia’s Ambassador to the Netherlands, Juan Jose Quintana, hosted a meeting of diplomats from the Group of Latin American Countries (GRULAC) in The Hague to highlight the work of the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) and to discuss the issue of missing and disappeared persons in the region. Countries in Latin America face complex challenges related to accounting for missing persons. However, effective strategies have been developed and governments and other stakeholders can address the issue successfully by working with one another and with international agencies, Kathryne Bomberger, the Director-General of the ICMP, said during the meeting. http://bit.ly/1UALZWq

Jim Kimsey dies at 76

The New York Times reported on 2 March that Jim Kimsey, a dot-com entrepreneur who helped turn a failed video game company into America Online, the giant dial-up service that helped bring the Internet to the masses, died on Tuesday at his home in McLean at the age of 76. In retirement, Mr. Kimsey focused on philanthropy, creating a family foundation that benefited education and the arts. In 2001, then-Secretary of State Colin Powell named Mr. Kimsey chairman of the International Commission on Missing Persons, which addresses issues related to people missing because of wars, human rights violations and natural disasters. http://nyti.ms/1TS8o25

Number of missing people in Mexico grows

Prensa Latina reported on 2 March that in 2015, the number of people missing in Mexico, rose from 25,293, to 27,215. The latest figures for January 2016 show that there are now 28,161 people reported as missing, including 946 who disappeared while under investigation by the Prosecutor Office of the Republic of Mexico. Tamaulipas still leads the Mexican states with 5,622 missing person cases, followed by the state of Mexico with 2,925 missing. Mexican officials point out that the most common causes are voluntary disappearances due to domestic problems, migration, serving a sentence in a penitentiary, or being the victim of crime. http://bit.ly/1niR3Be

Rights commission finds “serious crisis” in Mexico

Yahoo News carried a story today saying that the human rights situation in Mexico is “tragic” and the problems don’t just involve drug violence but also torture, impunity, excessive force and police collusion with criminals, an Organization of American States panel said. Of particular concern are the reports of disappearances, extrajudicial executions and torture. “Family members’ discoveries of mass graves with dozens of bodies underscore that they are the ones who have undertaken the search for their loved ones given the State’s ineffectiveness,” the report said. http://yhoo.it/1Qtmrc9

Three of the five Hong Kong booksellers held in China to be released

International Business Times reported today that three of the five missing booksellers from Hong Kong, who have been held in China, will soon be freed on bail while Chinese officials continue their investigation, Hong Kong’s police said late Wednesday, according to reports. Hong Kong officials said in a statement, that they were informed of the bail for the three men by China’s public security department in the neighboring Guangdong province. Mainland officials confirmed that Lui Por, Cheung Chi-ping and Lam Wing-kee will be “released on bail pending investigation in the coming few days.” http://bit.ly/1UAMZd2

South Sudan: 40 killed in Malakal camp and many went missing

Sudan Tribune reported on 2 March that An investigation by South Sudanese internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Malakal camp manned by the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) have claimed that more than forty people died, and over 90 others were injured with many more missing following clashes involving ethnic rival armed Dinka youth and Shilluk members last month. The statement also blamed the UN peacekeepers in Malakal for not only failing to stop the armed attackers but also allegedly killing some civilians who attempted to run to safe sites within the UNMISS compound. UNMISS and South Sudan government launched separate investigations to the cause of the clashes and their reports are not yet completed. http://bit.ly/1WVRnSI

Were thousands of indigenous women murdered in Canada?

The Daily Beast, a news portal from the US, carried a story today saying that Shauna Taylor spent her teenage years hustling on the streets of Winnipeg—struggling with an addiction to hard drugs, and alcohol from the time she was 13. Now in her 40s, Taylor has managed to graduate college, and start mentoring children and youth in her community. However, most indigenous women in her situation are not as lucky. According to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), 1,800 indigenous women in Canada have been murdered or gone missing since the 1980s. However, advocates estimate that the actual number is closer to 4,000 and hope that the inquiry will re-open previously abandoned cases. http://thebea.st/1LAlezl

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.