Malaysia: call for ratification of ICPPED
The New Straits Times reports that Amnesty International’s Malaysia Director has called on the authorities to establish an Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission and to ratify the UN Convention against Torture and the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance (ICPPED). In April, the country’s Human Rights Commission found that activist Amri Che Mat and Pastor Raymond Koh were victims of “enforced disappearance”, carried out with the support of state agents.
Enforced disappearance in Syria
The Syrian Network for Human Rights says it documented at least 459 cases of arbitrary arrests in April, including 272 cases of enforced disappearance. It says most arrests are carried out without any judicial warrant while the victims are passing through checkpoints or during raids. “The detainee is tortured from the very first moment of his or her arrest and denied any opportunity to contact his or her family or to have access to a lawyer. The authorities also flatly deny the arbitrary arrests they have carried out and most of the detainees are subsequently categorized as forcibly disappeared.”
Venezuela: Violent Response to Demonstrators
Reports of violence by security forces against anti-government protests in Venezuela raise fears of widespread gross violations of human rights against opposition supporters, according to Human Rights Watch. The Penal Forum, a leading NGO, reports that at least 240 people, including 17 children, have been detained since 30 April in Caracas and 13 of the country’s 23 states.
US: pilot DNA program for immigration control
Wired Magazine reports on an initiative that US officials say will make it possible to identify genetic patterns among migrants entering the country from Mexico. Starting as soon as next week the Department of Homeland Security will begin piloting a DNA-testing program that it says will expose immigrants posing as family members. It says it will employ a new kind of genetic testing, known as Rapid DNA technology.
Items in the 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.