Tripoli urged to explain disappearance

A human rights group is calling on Libya to explain the mysterious disappearance of a prominent activist.

    Muammar al-Qadhafi has been accused of human rights abuses

    Amnesty International said it wants to put an end to the suffering of the wife and children of human rights activist Mansur al-Kikhiya, who vanished 10 years ago in Egypt.

    Al-Kikhiya, a Libyan national, was last seen on 10 December 1993 in Cairo where he was attending an Arab human rights conference.

    He had worked in the Libyan government for a number of years but resigned from office in 1980 in protest at the execution of political opponents.

    Despite repeated attempts by his family and human rights organisations to seek clarification about his whereabouts, his family is still awaiting news about him.

    "As a woman and as a mother, I have had to live with the suffering of not knowing where my husband is and whether he is still alive. My children and I just want to know the truth, whatever that may be"

    Baha al-Kikhiya

    Mystery 



    "As a woman and as a mother, I have had to live with the suffering of not knowing where my husband is and whether he is still alive. My children and I just want to know the truth, whatever that may be," Baha al-Kikhiya, Mansur's wife, said.

    Libya has told Amnesty it has "conducted a series of investigations to determine (Mansur al-Kikhiya's) whereabouts", but that "(his) disappearance remains a mystery".

    Over the years, al-Kikhiya's family has heard numerous and sometimes conflicting allegations about his fate.

    One persistent rumour suggested he may have been handed over by Egypt to Libya, where he may still be detained.

    Other cases

    Al-Kikhiya's disappearance is one of a number of cases of Libyan nationals who have vanished both inside and outside the country.

    "The Libyan authorities must open thorough, impartial and independent investigations into the cases of all those who 'disappeared' inside and outside the country and make public the findings"

    Amnesty International

     

    Jab Allah Matar and Izzat Yusuf al-Maqrif, two prominent opposition activists, disappeared in Cairo in March 1990.

    For well over a decade, their whereabouts have remained unknown.

    Their families have received unconfirmed reports suggesting they were both handed over to Libya immediately after their reported arrests in Cairo, and were detained without charge or trial in Abu Salim Prison in Tripoli.

    "The Libyan authorities must open thorough, impartial and independent investigations into the cases of all those who 'disappeared' inside and outside the country and make public the findings," said Amnesty.

    The authorities must also ensure reparation for victims of "disappearance" or their families, and return the remains of those who have died in custody.

    They must also bring those suspected of human rights violations to justice in trials which conform to international standards.

    SOURCE: Aljazeera


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