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Mexico: UN rights office urges authorities to 'step up' efforts to find missing students

India Blooms News Service | | 25 Oct 2014, 10:49 am
New York, Oct 25 (IBNS) The United Nations human rights office has voiced concern about the continued enforced disappearance of students in the Mexican town of Iguala and urged local authorities to step up their efforts in finding them.

Speaking to reporters in Geneva earlier on Friday, Ravina Shamdasani, spokesperson for the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), welcomed the work done by Mexican authorities in tracking the 43 missing students but added that their “mechanisms have not yet been successful” in resolving the disappearance.

According to media reports, the students were last seen on 26 September as they arrived in Iguala to stage a protest. Upon debarking from their bus, the students were blocked by police who, by some accounts, were operating in collusion with a local criminal gang. The police then fired upon the students, killing six people, including a 15-year old child and three students, and injuring another 17 people, while the 43 students were then taken into custody.

As a result of initial investigations, 52 people have been arrested in connection with the students’ disappearance, including at least 36 local police officers, and security forces, investigators and technical resources have been deployed to Iguala and the surrounding region. In addition, the Ministry of Interior and the Attorney General have established a direct dialogue with families, students and NGOs.

Despite these efforts, the students remain missing.

Shamdasani expressed concern that nine mass graves were discovered on the outskirts of Iguala and urged Mexican authorities to conduct “effective, prompt and impartial investigations so as to identify those who were buried in the mass graves and bring those responsible to justice.”

She added that the UN Human Rights Office in Mexico was following closely these cases and was ready to provide any assistance that may be required.
 

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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again; UNESCO regrets #HagiaSophia, #Turkey, #Istanbul, #HagiaSophiaMosqueAgain Istanbul/IBNS: Hagia Sophia, Turkey's iconic monument, a UNESCO World Heritage and one of the central attractions of its capital Istanbul, is no longer a museum. It has been turned back as a mosque though some 1500 years ago it was built as an Orthodox Christian cathedral. Hagia Sophia was converted into a mosque during the Ottoman time in 1453 while under Ataturk it was turned into a museum in 1935. The decision comes amid a growing rise of the Islamists in Turkey who had been demanding that it be restored as a mosque though Opposition leaders with secular credentials had been against the move. A top court in Turkey ruled that turning it into a museum in 1935 by modern Turkey's secular architect Mustafa Kemal Ataturk was illegal, paving the way for present Turkey president Recep Tayyip Erdogan to declare it as a mosque again and to open it for Muslim prayers. Erdogan made the announcement an hour after the court ruled the conversion to museum in 1935 as illegal and scrapped its status. "May it be beneficial," posted Erdogan on Twitter, sharing an official document on the change with his signature. UNESCO regrets In an immediate reaction, UNESCO said it "deeply regrets" the decision. UNESCO said it was "regrettable that the Turkish decision was not the subject of dialog nor notification beforehand". "UNESCO calls on the Turkish authorities to open a dialog without delay in order to avoid a step back from the universal value of this exceptional heritage whose preservation will be reviewed by the World Heritage Committee in its next session," the United Nation's cultural body said in a statement. Istanbul icon of beauty and wonderment According to Turkey's official tourism website, Hagia Sophia is a remarkable achievement in the history of architecture. and a living proof of mankind's revolt against the laws of physics and it calls it a monument whose importance transcends borders. It is one of UNESCO's World Cultural Heritage sites attracting millions of visitors across the world with its majestic grandeur

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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again 11 Jul 2020, 01:37 pm