Middle East and North Africa

For more than four decades countries in the Middle East and North Africa have faced a significant missing persons problem as a result of political repression, wars and civil strife. The Lebanese civil conflict, the Iran-Iraq war and the more recent hostilities in Iraq, Syria and Libya have created an upsurge in the number of missing persons. ICMP has been involved in solving cases directly and has helped authorities and civil society organizations to establish mechanisms and networks that can address this challenge in a sustained and effective way.

In this section

Iraq

Iraq is affected by very high numbers of missing persons. Estimates run from a 250,000 to one million people missing from decades of conflict and human rights abuses. Today there are millions of relatives of the missing in Iraq who struggle with uncertainty surrounding the fate of a loved one. ICMP is working to help Iraq […]

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Kuwait

On 2 August 1990, Iraq invaded Kuwait, which it annexed two days later. After seven months of Iraqi occupation, a US-led coalition evicted the Iraqi forces. During the occupation, Kuwait contends that more than 600 of its citizens went missing, while Iraq, for its part contends that over 1,000 Iraqis disappeared in Kuwait. A so-called […]

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Libya

According to the Ministry for the Families of Martyrs and the Missing (MFMM), there are estimated to be up to 10,000 persons missing in Libya. This number includes persons missing as a result of the 2011 conflict, as well as those who went missing during Muammar Gaddafi’s 42-year rule, including in the 1977 war with […]

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Syria

Estimates cited by the UN in 2019 indicate that over 100,000 persons are missing as a result of the current conflict in Syria. In addition, the country has a legacy of missing and disappeared persons cases linked to human rights abuses and other causes that occurred prior to the conflict. Syrians who have fled the […]

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