from the points around the globe to sow the seeds of the international
movement against involuntary disappearances, representatives of organizations
concerned with the common issue of involuntary disappearances from Asia,
Africa and Latin America attended the inter-continental activities sponsored
by the Families of Victims of Involuntary Disappearance (FIND) during
the 1997 commemoration of the International Week of the Disappeared. On
this occasion, forming an Asian group to be linked to the already established
Latin American Federation of Associations of Relatives of Disappeared
Detainees (FEDEFAM) was envisioned.
year later, the core of the envisioned Asian group, composed of organizations
from the Philippines, Kashmir, India and Sri Lanka saw the light of day
on June 4, 1998 in Manila, Philippines. The event was graced by former
FEDEFAM President, Yanette Bautista. It was the start of a series of joint
activities of AFAD and FEDEFAM.
years of ground work resulted in the convening of the Founding Congress
also held in Manila. From a core group of three organizations, AFAD has
expanded and is now a Federation of seven organizations concerned on the
phenomenon involuntary disappearances and other forms of civil and political
Second Congress, with the theme "Strengthening AFAD's Unity Amidst
Diversity: A Key to an Effective Human Rights Human Rights Advocacy"
will be convened on August 26-30, 2003 in Bangkok, Thailand.