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The Forgotten Men And Their Families

Amnesty International has issued a new research statement on enforced disappearances in Pakistan. Afraid Canvas – our regular contributor – has illustrated the dire situation for our readers. The text below comprises direct quotes from Amnesty’s research.

The Commission of Inquiry on Enforced Disappearances (COIED) has 2178 cases unresolved as of now. As per the Commission’s recent monthly report 48 cases disposed of in the month of January 2019, included 46 traced persons out of which 29 were returned home, 10 were traced to internment centers, five are in jails on terrorism charges and two were described as “dead bodies.

The UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearance has more than 700 cases pending from Pakistan. The number of cases of victims of enforced disappearance recorded by victim groups are much higher.

It feels like our lives have gotten stuck in a moment and not moving forward. We cannot take any decisions about our lives, my children cannot get married, their lives have come to a halt (wife of a missing person)

Families of the disappeared suffer significant harm. They live with continuous uncertainty about the fate or whereabouts of their loved ones and their lives are often utterly disrupted by the disappearance.

Victim groups and the civil society have serious concerns with regards to the effectiveness of Pakistan’s COIED, primarily that it is not using its powers to investigate and hold the perpetrators accountable and that it does not have civil society or the victim groups representation on its board.

“We are repeatedly given advice that if we stop protesting, end our activism against enforced disappearances and sit at home, our Baba will come back.” 

– Sasui Lohar, daughter of Hidayatullah Lohar, forcibly disappeared since April 17, 2017 from Nasirabad, Sindh, Pakistan.

Ensure that all measures are taken to immediately end the practice of enforced disappearance.

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