Amnesty: Digital Space Launched to Highlight Enforced Disappearances in South Asia

Amnesty International Logotypeby Amnesty International, London, March 27, 2024

Enforced disappearance in South Asia – Amnesty International

Amnesty International, along with over 20 partner organisations from South Asia, launches the first phase of an interactive digital space titled, “Footprints – Virtual Museum on Enforced Disappearances in South Asia,” today to highlight stories of those who have been subject to enforced disappearances in the region.

“The new Virtual Museum on Enforced Disappearances in South Asia – Footprints – aims to document and enhance the understanding of the troubled pasts and volatile presents that many South Asian countries have. Enforced disappearances have left many families with unanswered questions and scarred for life. In some countries this heinous crime is still persistent while some state authorities have failed to deliver on promises of truth, justice and reparations to the victims and their families. The interactive digital space aims to showcase such stories of enforced disappearances from South Asia to enable a collective approach to hold governments accountable, challenge impunity and demand justice,” said Smriti Singh, Amnesty International’s Regional Director for South Asia.

I don’t lock doors since he was forcibly taken from us.
If he comes back even in the middle of the night, he doesn’t have to wait outside.

Amina Masood Janjua, wife of Pakistani businessman Masoon Janjua who was forcibly disappeared on 30 July 2005

“In this first phase, more than 40 stories from the region have been highlighted as we will continue to add more stories in the run up to the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances in August this year.”

The interactive digital space available at https://www.amnesty.org/en/projects/enforced-disappearance-in-south-asia/ gives a one-stop access to the verified cases of the disappeared from the region including their stories, the experiences of their families in seeking justice, and examples of resurfaced and recurrent disappearances.

The new Virtual Museum on Enforced Disappearances in South Asia – Footprints – aims to document and enhance the understanding of the troubled pasts and volatile presents that many South Asian countries have.

Smriti Singh, Amnesty International’s Regional Director for South Asia

South Asia has a particularly gruesome record when it comes to enforced disappearances, with some governments persisting with the practice while others failing to provide answers to those who have waited years for them. While enforced disappearances are a long-standing issue in Sri Lanka and Nepal, they continue to be used by authorities in Pakistan, Bangladesh, India and Afghanistan. Enforced disappearances are a tool of terror and a crime under international law with a devastating impact that strikes not just individuals and their families, but entire societies leaving scars that are very difficult to heal.

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