• Tuesday, Nov 30, 2021
  • Last Update : 06:16 pm

Sri Lanka's biggest mass grave unrelated to civil war

  • Published at 11:04 pm March 7th, 2019
Srilanka mass grave
Human skulls are seen at a site of a former war zone in Mannar, Sri Lanka November 27, 2018 Reuters

The remains of over 300 men, women and children were found last year at a site in the northern Mannar district

Sri Lanka's biggest mass grave predates the country's bloody civil war by hundreds of years, according to an independent carbon dating report unveiled in a court Thursday.

The remains of over 300 men, women and children were found last year at a site in the northern Mannar district, where ethnic Tamil guerrillas fought security forces during a 37-year ethnic war that ended in May 2009.

Sri Lanka's Office on Missing Persons (OMP) funded tests on the remains to determine whether the victims were killed during the conflict, which claimed the lives of at least 100,000 people.

But a Miami-based laboratory concluded that the victims likely died up to 615 years ago – predating even the first European colonisation of the Indian Ocean island by the Portuguese – according to testimony in the Mannar magistrates court. 

Tamil Tiger rebels and government forces both held Mannar district at different times during the conflict, as did troops from neighbouring India, who were deployed in the country in the late 1980s.

The mass grave in the former war zone was discovered by construction workers.

The OMP, which is independent of the government but has a state mandate, said just over 300 skeletal remains had been found, including the remains of about 20 children.

The office has wide powers to investigate cases of people still missing after the civil war. Both soldiers and Tamil rebels were accused of targeting civilians.

About 19,000 people, including 5,000 security personnel, are still unaccounted for after the conflict, a 2013 government panel said in 2013.

Facebook 51
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail