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Monday, August 31, 2015

Action urged to end "alarming" number of enforced disappearances on International Day

Action urged to end "alarming" number of enforced disappearances on International Day



Family members desperate to know the truth hold photographs of their 'disappeared' loved ones. ©ICRC/HEGER, Boris

An appeal to all Member States to join the global convention banning the secret abduction or imprisonment of persons has been made by the UN Secretary-General on the fourth International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances.

In a message on the Day, observed annually on 30 August, Ban Ki-moon denounced the "alarming" number of acts that are tantamount to forced disappearances.

Maria Carlino reports.

In 2010, the international convention that makes the secret abduction or imprisonment of persons illegal under any circumstances entered into force.

But the practice is still in use by some governments.  

And in recent years, armed extremists and terrorist groups have committed an "alarming" number of human rights abuses that are tantamount to enforced disappearance, according to the UN Secretary-General.

The fate of the victims is often unknown and they are frequently tortured and in constant fear of being killed.

Marking the fourth International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances on Sunday, Mr Ban urged all Member States to sign and ratify the global convention

The UN chief said that in the past year alone, the UN's two groups of experts that address enforced disappearance received 246 requests by family members across the world to take urgent action.

Maria Carlino, United Nations.

Duration: 1'00″

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