Friday, September 2, 2016

#TheDayIDisappeared : Speak about them all the time

Tuesday marked the International Day of disappeared worldwide dedicated to the forcibly disappeared people all over the world. I think after those three years , the term of "forcible disappeared" has become familiar to the level in Egypt that the White House issued a statement on Tuesday about forcible disappearance cases in Syria, North Korea .. and Egypt.
Yup , Egypt according to the statement issued by Susan Rice, the National security advisor in Obama's administration.
Egypt has seen an unprecedented spike in enforced disappearances, with Egyptian security forces increasingly relying on this tactic to silence and intimidate the government's critics.  Last August the UN Human Rights Council Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances reported a 100 percent increase in reported cases in Egypt over the previous year; in February, that same Working Group cited another forty new cases.
I am waiting for the reaction of the Egyptian ministry of foreign affairs.
Cases like Esraa El-Taweel and her friends to Mostafa Massouny to Ashraf Shehata to Giulio Regeni made the term "forcible disappearance" familiar in Egypt to the level that President El-Sisi spoke about it. "Of course, he denied it"

Forced disappearance
Source : 123 RF

According to the Egyptian administration whether Sisi or ministry of interior , those people who suddenly disappeared have joined Daesh.

Egypt's Stop Forced Disappearance campaign released its annual report about forcible disappearance from August 2015 to August 2016 saying that it documented 912 cases of forced disappearance.  "The Campaign which originally launched in August 2015 by the Egyptian Commissions for Freedoms and Rights "ECFR" has got an official website now."

According to the report, 789 forced disappearance cases were recorded in that year while the other 123 cases were old ones that took place from 2013 to August 2015 before the campaign would start.

Most of the 912 according to the report "584" were survived "their whereabouts have been known" including 41 people who have been released from detention while 4 other people are still detained. The report added that 52 cases are still under the category of "forcibly disappeared".

When it comes to the rest 276 cases , the campaign made it clear that it could not update their info to know if they were found or disappeared.
The report also slams the National Council For Human rights "NCHR" for its report issued in July about forcible disappearance accusing other NGOs of exaggerating the number of cases.
What it is interesting about the NCHR's report that it received 276 complaints about people forcibly disappeared from April 2015 to March 2016 and that the Egyptian ministry of interior admitted that it detained 170 people including 143 who are still detained temporarily.

On Tuesday , a group of "forcible disappearance" victims' families tried to protest in front of the House of Representatives but they were forcibly dispersed.

In other Arab countries, families still wait to know the fate of the disappeared ones

For that occasion , I am using that hashtag "#TheDayIDisappeared" launched by Lebanese activists and bloggers in the post headline to  remind the world with those disappeared during the Lebanese civil war from 40 years ago. Up till this day , their families do not know their actual fate.
In Iraq , it is estimated that no less than one million people disappeared forcibly since the Iraq-Iran war in the 1980s leading the Arab countries so far.
On Tuesday , the hashtag "#1millioncandles_Iraq" has been active internationally to remind the world with those who disappeared with no trace.

Needless to say , Syria comes after Iraq unfortunately when it comes to the highest number of forcible disappearance in the country.
Syrian Network for Human rights released a report called "The Prolonged Pain" to document forcible disappearance cases in the worn-torn Syria since the start of the Syrian revolution in 2011.
According to the Syrian NGO , more than 75,000 people have disappeared since 2011  in Syria.
It is worth to mention that just like Iraq, forcible disappearance was a familiar thing during Al-Assad rule.

Action Group For Palestinians of Syria "AGPS" also issued a statement about the number of Palestinians forcibly disappeared in Syria especially in the prisons of Bashar El-Assad.
According to the AGPS' statistics and documentation not less than 11,000 Palestinian were forcibly disappeared and are believed to be detained at the Syrian regime's prisons. The Action group also announced that not less than 449 Palestinian refugees died due to torture in the Syrian prisons including women and old men.

Now, those people are not numbers , they are humans. People should speak about them all the time to know their fate whether in Egypt or Iraq or Syria or Lebanon or Palestine.
This is the least we can do. 


  1. Enforced disappearances are a form of terrorist promoted by depraved terror organizations like Tamarod. Pro-Sisi terrorists share with ISIS and al-Qaeda terrorists a support for anti-human modes of governance. They agree on quite a bit of stuff.

  2. Forcible disappearance is tragic, and people should talk about it because they can only ‘talk’ about it. There is no crime without a body and disappearance is endlessly challenged. An Egyptian official once denied the government involvement in a famous murder case, on basis that the authorities could have disposed the body without a trace!

    The real key to solve forcible disappearance is to find the truth in crimes where the bodies are found. The perpetrators of disappearance and murders belong to the same organization structure. The results of solving one critical murder case, such as Regeni, can’t be contained. The similarities and domino effect will shed the light on the systematic machine of murder and disappearance.

    If the national media is complicit by silence in cases of murder, can citizen journalism spear an effort to uncover the truth of a crime?


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