Resolve 'enforced disappearances': Amnesty International to Pakistan

WION Web Team Pakistan Mar 20, 2018, 09.11 AM(IST)

File photo of Taha Siddiqui. Photograph:( Reuters )

Amnesty International said today that Pakistan should take steps to resolve "enforced disappearances", calling it a "tool of terror".

Pakistan has reportedly accepted UN recommendations that make "enforced disappearances" a crime but has refused to ratify an international convention protecting anyone from enforced disappearances.

"Disappearances are a tool of terror... if committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack, they constitute a crime against humanity," Amnesty International said, adding,"as cruel and deliberate.... families are plunged into a state of anguish, trying to keep the flame of hope alive while fearing the worst. They may be in this limbo for years."

According to Amnesty International, the United Nations has more than 700 cases pending in Pakistan, while a state commission of inquiry into enforced disappearances lists hundreds of additional cases, AFP reported.

The victims include bloggers, journalists, students, peace activists and other human rights defenders.

Recently, WION's Pakistan bureau chief Taha Siddiqui had said he was receiving threats from Pakistan's military. Taha's family and friends were also reportedly receiving similar threats.

Taha Siddiqui has since left Pakistan and is living in Europe.

Last year, five social media activists who had been critical of the military as well as extremism "disappeared" mysteriously, with abductions sparking nationwide protests. Although four were released, the fate of the fifth person is still unknown.