Daily World News Digest, 9 March 2015

Malaysia Airlines admits battery lapse on Flight 370

The Wall Street Journal reports that Malaysia Airlines today admitted that an expired battery on a locator beacon on Flight 370 had not been replaced, a lapse revealed in an interim report into the disappearance of the Boeing 777. The report, prepared by a team of 19 investigators from Malaysia and seven other nations including the US, Australia and China, said that the battery on the beacon had expired in December 2012 and no record was available to show that it was replaced. Flight 370 vanished from radar in the small hours of 8 March 2014, less than an hour into its flight to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur. http://on.wsj.com/1Bo6D1w

Indian state gets its first DNA profiling unit

The New Indian Express reported on 8 March that the Chief Minister of the eastern state of Odisha on Saturday inaugurated the state’s first DNA profiling unit. Opening the new facility at the State Forensic Science Laboratory Naveen Patnaik called on police to adopt modern techniques. Director General of Police (DGP) Sanjeev Marik said the facility will mean that police in Odisha will no longer have to depend on laboratories in other states for DNA profiling in murder cases, which will make it possible to deliver DNA reports more quickly. http://bit.ly/1GuAjOU

Nine foreigners missing after IS attack on Libyan oil field

The Associated Press reported on 7 March that nine foreigners are missing after fighters from Islamic State attacked an oil field in Libya on Friday, killing several security guards. Austrian Foreign Ministry spokesman Martin Weiss said the Friday afternoon attack occurred at the al-Ghani oil field, south of Sirte. Security teams retook the site, but nine foreign workers are unaccounted for, including one Austrian, one Czech and seven non-EU citizens. No demands have been made by any group or individual for their return. http://yhoo.it/1838fmU

Indonesia joins search for 16 missing in Turkey

The Jakarta Post reports today that Indonesian and Turkish authorities are searching for 16 Indonesians who went missing while on a group tour in Istanbul. There are indications that they may have joined Islamic State. According to the Foreign Ministry, the 16 Indonesians, six of whom are children — one just 10 months old — entered Turkey with nine other Indonesians on 24 February on a package tour. The 16 separated from the group immediately after passing through immigration. There had been no news of them by the time the group was scheduled to return to Indonesia on 4 March. http://bit.ly/1EurFPR

Witness Denies Mladic Gave “Die” Signal for Srebrenica Captives

The Institute for War and Peace reported on 6 March that a defense witness in the trial of Ratko Mladic has denied that the former Bosnian Serb army chief indicated that prisoners should be killed while he was in the Srebrenica area of Bosnia and Herzegovina in July 1995. Mladen Blagojevic was a military policeman serving as bodyguard to Mladic at the time, and gave testimony before the Hague tribunal. In 1998, he was convicted by a Bosnian court for his role at Srebrenica. Defense counsel Miodrag Stojanovic focused on Blagojevic’s recollection of 13 July 1995, as it related to testimony given by Bosnian Serb army (VRS) officer Momir Nikolic when he appeared as a prosecution witness at the Mladic trial in June 2013. Nikolic said that when Mladic was asked what should be done with captured Bosnian Muslims at Srebrenica, he “smirked” and made a cutting gesture with his hand. Nikolic was himself charged with crimes at Srebrenica, and pleaded guilty to crimes against humanity in 2003. In 2006, he was given a 20-year sentence, which he is serving in Finland. http://bit.ly/1AUZMZF

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.