AFAD Statement on the International Human Rights Day 2012
Today as the world commemorates the 64th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), the Asian Federation Against Involuntary Disappearances (AFAD) joins the families of the disappeared and other human rights groups in the call for the full respect of the right not to be subjected to enforced disappearances.
However, 64 years after the adoption of the UDHR in Paris, France, thousands of people around the world are still forcibly made to disappear by their own governments and are placed in illegal and unknown detention centers while their families are left with no means to seek truth and demand for justice.
We strongly urge President Benigno Simeon Aquino III to sign into law the Anti- Enforced Disappearance bill on Monday, December 10, 2012, as we commemorate the International Human Rights Day, to show his administration’s clear resolve to uphold human rights and end impunity.
There is no better day for the President to reaffirm his commitment to human rights and vow to end enforced disappearances than on this day as the world observes the 64th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – the first universal recognition of our fundamental rights and freedoms as human persons.
Colombo, Sri Lanka - The Asian Federation Against Involuntary Disappearances (AFAD) concluded its week-long Council Meeting in Sri Lanka with a solidarity night together with local civil society organizations and family members of the disappeared. The night of sharing, video presentation, music and dancing ended with the arrest of six persons, including two elderly women family members of the disappeared, Ane Teresa Fernando and Ariyawathi de Silva; the Secretary of the Families of the Disappeared (FOD), Wasantha Ranile Kumara; Executive Director of the Right to Life, Mr. Philip Dissanayake; a vehicle driver and a friend. Their laptops, mobile phones and the key to the vehicle of Mr. Dissanayake, with plate number 59-9700 were taken into police custody. The victims were put into a police jeep by uniformed policemen, including the Headquarters Chief Inspector in Negombo, and another policeman who introduced himself as Assistant Superintendent of Police, but was plain clothed. Witnesses took the following official police numbers: 89218; 79573; 89568; 10701; 51717.
MR. OLIVIER DE FROUVILLE
United Nations Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances,
Esteemed Chairperson and Members of the UN WGEID,
We, the Council Members of the Asian Federation Against Involuntary Disappearances (AFAD), would like to bring to the attention of the UN WGEID the issue of continuous denial of travel documents to Mr. Parvez Imroz, AFAD Council Member representing the Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) in Kashmir, India and his colleague Mr. Zahir-ud-Din, who is also member of the association. As you are fully aware, the AFAD has been continuously campaigning against the phenomenon of enforced disappearances in whole Asia. In the course of our work for truth, justice, reparation, redress and memory, our member-organizations are actively engaged in participating in conferences, workshops and meetings organized in different countries.