Lebanese mourn for civil war’s 17,000 ‘disappeared’

Lebanon on Friday marked the passage of 43 years since outbreak of country's civil war

By Rabie Damaj

BEIRUT (AA) - Friends and relatives of people who went missing during Lebanon’s civil war (1975-1991) are calling for a boycott of upcoming parliamentary polls unless candidates first pledge to adopt legislation aimed at finding their lost loved ones.

Dozens of people staged a march in Beirut on Friday, which marked the 43rd anniversary of the outbreak of the civil war.

Demonstrators demanded the adoption of legislation aimed at determining the fates of some 17,000 people who went missing during the destructive conflict.

Wedad Helwani, who heads a popular committee for the families of the “disappeared”, urged her compatriots to “refrain from voting for any candidate unless they first sign a petition demanding such legislation”.

She went on to criticize successive Lebanese governments for their silence over the missing persons.

During Friday’s demonstration in Beirut, two lawmakers and seven parliamentary candidates signed the petition.

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