IRAQ: UN Committee on Enforced Disappearances urges government to locate citizen Walid Al JANABI

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The United Nations Committee on Enforced Disappearances (CED) has called on Iraq to locate Walid AL JANABI who has been missing since his arrest on 6 June 2015 at his family home by members of the Iraqi army. 

This is the third call of the Iraqi government since the beginning of the year by the UN Committee responsible for monitoring the implementation of the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, ratified by Iraq on 23 November 2010. 

Disappearance of Walid AL JANABI 

On 6 June 2015, at around 1 a.m., members of the Iraqi army broke into the family home and arrested Walid Al AL JANABI and his brothers Khalid and Hamid. All were forced into a military vehicle before being taken to an unknown location. 

All the steps taken by his family with the various Iraqi authorities to find them have gone unanswered. 

Mandated by the victims' families, the Al Wissam association and Alkarama had submitted the situation of AL JANABI to the UN Committee in an urgent communication dated 7 November 2017. 

The Committee regrets the lack of information 

In its communication to Iraq, the Committee expressed its regret at the lack of information provided by the State party indicating that it "does not specify whether Mr. Walid Al Janabi was in fact detained and does not provide any information to clarify his fate and whereabouts, nor on the measures taken to search for and locate him. » 

During the procedure for the exchange of written submissions with the State Party, Alkarama had drawn the attention of the UN independent experts to the inconsistency of the State Party's replies according to which AL JANABI had been arrested for acts of terrorism. 

However, Alkarama pointed out that the arrest warrant provided by Iraq to the Committee was issued more than seven years after the arrest of AL JANABI and that Iraq does not provide any details on the procedures carried out nor any official document classifying the victim as wanted by the Iraqi authorities. 

The Committee notes a number of shortcomings 

In line with Alkarama's observations, the Committee once again reminded Iraq "that in order to be valid with respect to detention, the arrest warrant must predate the date of the reference detention." 

The Committee also expressed concern about Iraq's lack of cooperation with the procedure, stating that "more than six years after the registration of the urgent action, the State party has still not provided information on the measures taken to establish and implement a comprehensive strategy for the search and investigation of his disappearance and to identify the perpetrators of his disappearance." 

For these reasons, the Committee called on Iraq to urgently locate Walid AL JANABI and to inform his family of the measures taken to this effect.