Sunday, 26 April 2015

The fate of an Ahwazi Arab who was "abducted by the authorities" six years ago is still unknown

Yousef Silawi
was abducted in
November 2009
Mr. Yousef  Silawi, son of Abbas, born in 1959 , disappeared on 8 November 2009, shortly after returning from Syria, in mysterious circumstances.

Sources close to the case believe his was abducted near his home in Phase4  district-Ahwaz due to his kinship with the late Masour Silawi-Ahwazi,  the Ahwazi rights activist and co-founder  of  the Democratic Solidarity Party of  Al-Ahwaz, who died in March 2009 in London,  in what some Ahwazis including his party members believe, mysterious and unknown circumstances. According to his family Mr. Silawi has never been involved in any political, cultural or whatever activities. 

The family, since his disappearance, have searched in vain hospitals, police stations, intelligence services headquarters, judiciary and even supreme leader’s office. Iranian authorities in Al-Ahwaz and Tehran have, until now, declined to reveal his whereabouts or open an investigation to his “disappearance”.

"Family and friends of people who have disappeared experience slow mental anguish. Not knowing whether their son or daughter, mother or father is still alive. Not knowing where he or she is being held, or how they are being treated. Searching for the truth may put the whole family in great danger.

It is women who most often lead the struggle to find out what happened in the minutes, days and years since the disappearance – putting themselves at risk of intimidation, persecution and violence.

On top of this, when a key family member disappears, financial security can disintegrate. The disappeared person is often the family’s main breadwinner, the only one able to cultivate the crops or run the family business. This is then made even worse by some national laws that don’t let you draw a pension or receive other support without a death certificate.

Not knowing if their loved one will ever return, those left behind live in limbo.

Disappearances Convention

The International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance came into effect in 2010. It aims to prevent enforced disappearances, uncover the truth when they do happen, and make sure survivors and victims’ families receive justice and reparation.

The Convention is one of strongest human rights treaties ever adopted by the UN."

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