Daily World News Digest, 6 December 2016

Bringing up the bodies in Bosnia

The Guardian publishes a report today on the process of finding and identifying those who are still missing from the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina. It describes in detail the role of the International Commission on Missing Persons, and the “diligent purpose” of those who seek to account for the missing, while families “— survivors of the hurricane of violence that blew through this corner of Europe – searched, wondered, feared the worst”. http://bit.ly/2g43PFv

Prosecutor’s closing arguments in Mladic trial at ICTY

Voice of America reported yesterday on the closing arguments for the prosecution in Mladic’s trial, the last major war crimes case at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY), which is winding down after more than 20 years prosecuting war crimes committed in former Yufgoslavia during the 1990s. Prosecutor Alan Tieger told judges at the Tribunal that rather than the “marginalized figure” his defense attorney made him out to be, Mladic helped to orchestrate killings, “Mladic walked into Srebrenica and vowed that the time had come to take revenge on the Turks,” Tieger said of the massacre, in which 8,000 Muslim men and boys, some as young as 12, were “systematically slaughtered.” http://bit.ly/2haedHR

Human Rights Watch: Illegal detention and torture in China

Reuters carries an article today about a new report by Human Rights Watch on the corruption crackdown ordered by Chinese President Xi Jinping, which HRW says is reliant on a secret system of detentions and torture beyond the reach of the formal Chinese criminal justice system. HRW, which released its study in Hong Kong, called for the abolition of the system known as shuanggui, through which it alleges that confessions from Communist Party members are coerced. It said at least 11 people, according to media reports, had died under shuanggui since 2010. “President Xi has built his anti-corruption campaign on an abusive and illegal detention system,” Sophie Richardson, HRW’s China director, said in a statement. “Torturing suspects to confess won’t bring an end to corruption, but will end any confidence in China’s judicial system.” HRW says the 102-page report is the first on the secretive shuanggui system to be based on interviews with former detainees and their family. http://reut.rs/2hd1V5t

Funds shortage threatens missing persons helpline in Ireland

The Irish Examiner reports today that the National Missing Persons Helpline risks closing its doors. The charity has one part-time employee and more than 20 volunteers. Based in Dublin, it provides counselling to families of missing people. Every year more than 9,000 people are reported missing in Ireland and up to 50 of them are not traced. The charity has recently been refused €10,000 in funding to run a pilot project throughout the country that would enable families of missing people to meet and support each other. http://bit.ly/2hcUrzv

Balochistan: mass abductions reported

The Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organizations (UNPO) reported yesterday that on 1 December 2016, Pakistani security forces abducted 22 people in Balochistan. “It is believed that this latest wave of abductions is designed to facilitate the implementation of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which crosses Balochistan and has raised strong opposition among local people.” The report notes that the issue of abductions and enforced disappearances constitutes a major human rights violation in the region. http://bit.ly/2hcOfqX

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.