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Live from Abu Dhabi Connect the World takes you on a journey across continents, investigating the stories that are changing our world.

Thousands still missing in Bosnia

October 31st, 2013
02:00 PM ET

During the war of the early 1990s Kemal Pervanic - like thousands of other Bosnian Muslims - was held in a Serb prison camp.  He says he can still remember the screams of the people who were beaten in front of him, by Serb guards who had once been friends and neighbours. Enduring hunger and violence, he and his immediate family miraculously survived. But Kemal’s two cousins - Sejad and Suad - were killed during the inter-ethnic hostilities. To make their tragic loss even worse, Kemal’s family had to wait over a decade to find out what had happened to the young men.

Eventually the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) helped identify the bodies of Semal and Suad, as well as thousands of other Bosnians whose remains were found in mass graves across the country. Kemal says that without the work of the ICMP, families like his would never be able to understand what happened to their loved ones or be able to lay them to rest.

The ICMP was established in 1996 to find and identify people who have disappeared as a result of armed conflict and human rights violations. Now its remit extends to cover people missing from natural disasters, terrorism, organised crime and migration. The ICMP today is working to help identify victims of the Nairobi mall attack in September and the asylum-seekers who drowned off the coast of Lampedusa in October.

Becky talks to Kemal Pervanic who experienced the brutality of what happened first hand when he was detained in a camp and also reports on the work of the International Commission of Missing Persons (ICMP).

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