Daily World News Digest, 5 July 2018

Syria: call for international assistance in exhuming mass graves

Human Rights Watch said on Tuesday that with an unknown number of mass graves in the city of Raqqa and surrounding areas in Syria, and thousands of bodies left to be recovered, local authorities affiliated with the Raqqa Civil Council are struggling to cope with the logistical challenges of collecting and organizing information. Identifying missing people and preserving evidence for possible prosecutions will have implications for justice in Syria as a whole, HRW said. https://bit.ly/2NmPH78

Iraq: opening number 15 grave at Camp Speicher

The authorities in Iraq have announced that despite high temperatures, excavation of “grave number 15” at Camp Speicher in Tikrit has begun. Photographs of excavation work were posted on Facebook on 5 July. Grave 15 is located at the presidential palace complex. Due to high temperatures, excavation is being undertaken during hours of darkness (article in Arabic). https://bit.ly/2MREvhV

US officials promise aid to Yezidi community

US officials, including Ambassador Douglas Silliman and USAID administrator Mark Green have told representatives of the Yezidi community that the US will provide assistance in rebuilding but “the first step that must be taken before anything else is transitional justice to solve the aftermath of genocide and grave human right abuses in the Yezidi areas that was committed by Da’esh.” (article in Kurdish) https://bit.ly/2MR5H01

UN report cites 85 mass graves in DRC

A UN human rights team has reported atrocities in the Kasai region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Reuters reports. The UN Human Rights Commission has been presented with evidence of child soldiers being killed indiscriminately, as well as 86 mass graves, with an assumption that many more may be found. https://reut.rs/2MOzJRZ

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.