Profiles of the Missing

profiles 2

As part of a series of events to mark its 20th anniversary, ICMP is organizing a major international panel discussion on the global challenge of missing persons.

This will take place

 From 14.00 to 16.00 on 8 July 2016

At the Theater aan het Spui, Foyer

Spui 187, 2511 BN, The Hague, the Netherlands

Family members who have missing  loved ones as a result of conflict, human rights abuses, disasters, organized crime, forced migration and other causes, will describe their personal experience and explain the social and political strategies they have developed in order to seek truth, justice and reparation.

The Commissioners of the International Commission on Missing Persons, Thomas Miller, Knut Vollebaek, Her Majesty Queen Noor, Wim Kok, and Alistair Burt, along with ICMP Director-General Kathryne Bomberger, will participate.

The 90-minute discussion will be moderated by the award-winning war correspondent Janine di Giovanni.

As well as exploring the emotional toll of not knowing the fate of a loved one and the negative consequences that survivors often face when reporting a missing person or when dealing with the authorities in the aftermath of a disappearance, the discussion will examine how survivors can assert their rights. It will also focus on the particular challenges faced by women whose male family members have gone missing.

Profiles of the Missing will consider the mechanisms that exist at the international and domestic levels to address the widespread and complex issue of missing and disappeared persons and it will review effective strategies based on a modern, rights-based, rule-of-law approach to accounting for the missing.

Profiles of the Missing is open to members of the public.

If you would like to attend, please email

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ICMP is a treaty-based intergovernmental organization whose mandate is to secure the cooperation of governments, civil society organizations, judicial institutions, international organizations and others in locating and identifying missing persons from conflict, human rights abuses, disasters, crime, migration and other causes. As part of its programs, ICMP operates the world’s leading high-throughput DNA human identification standing capacity and the only comprehensive data management and protection platform focused on locating and identifying missing and disappeared persons through an accessible, online portal.

ICMP was established at the initiative of US President Clinton in 1996 following the G-7 summit in Lyon, France to address the issue of missing persons from the conflicts in the former Yugoslavia. In 2003 ICMP’s mandate and sphere of activity were extended by supporting governments, to address the global issue of missing persons. On 15 December 2014, the Foreign Ministers of the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Sweden, Belgium and Luxembourg signed a Treaty establishing ICMP formally as an intergovernmental organization, with its seat in The Hague. In 2015 the ICMP Treaty was signed by Chile, Cyprus, El Salvador, and Serbia. The Treaty is open for accession by all states.

ICMP capacity building and technical assistance has had a major – often a pivotal – impact on the location, recovery and identification of missing persons in more than 40 countries.

Profiles of the Missing will launch an international dialogue that will inform the Global Forum on Missing Persons, which ICMP will convene in 2017. The Global Forum will bring together policymakers, legal experts, academics, civil society activists and others to share best practice regarding efforts being undertaken around to account for missing persons.