Mannar mass grave Bones of 26 children found by Feb. 06

US carbon testing results ready within a week

By Dinasena Ratugamage Our Vavuniya correspondent

Senior officials in charge of excavation of Mannar mass grave said that so far of the skeletal remains found, 26 were of children.

By Feb 06, experts have so far unearthed skeletal remains belonging to 312 persons and 297 of them were removed from the grave for further investigations.

Recently, selected samples were sent to a US testing facility for carbon testing. On site Judicial Medical Officer Saminda Rajapaka said that results would be available within one week.

The human skeletal remains were first found by some construction workers while excavating the site behind the CWE Building in Mannar as part of a development project on May 25 last year. On the same day a complaint was lodged

with the Mannar Police. Investigations began under the supervision of former Mannar Magistrate Alex Raja. Excavations commenced, on May 28, 2018 after it was determined by a team of scientists that the area contained undisturbed skeletons.

 J.T. Prabhakaran, who succeeded Alex Raja, as District Judge Mannar gave some important rulings with regard to the mass grave. The excavations of the site are now being carried out under the supervision of incumbent Mannar Magistrate Swarnaraj.

Prof. Raj Somadeva, who leads the forensic archaeological investigation into the grave is on record as having said that they were yet to date the skeletal remains scientifically. Prof Somadeva said that one section of the grave contained skeletal remains in a pattern that could be observed easily while the other section did not show such specific pattern.

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