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Press Release

Site assessment at Zhilivodë/Žilivoda

11 May 2011

EULEX experts from the Department of Forensic Medicine (DFM) in cooperation with the Kosovo Security Force (KSF) today started the site assessment near the village of Zhilivodë/Žilivoda, in the municipality of Vushtrri/Vučitrn. They are assessing whether or not this is the site of a mass grave.

Preliminary work has been carried out to prepare the site for excavation. This is a continuation from the work which was initiated last year.

“On this first day we have managed to do some preliminary work which is important. The KSF has brought some digging machines, has prepared the site, and has coordinated with us the issue of security together with the police from Vushtrri/Vučitrn”, said Alan Robinson, the co-head of the Department of Forensic Medicine.

Kosovo Police have secured the site.

According to Alan Robinson, the site assessment is very complex logistically, technically and administratively.

“There are some administrative issues that need to be sorted out. Some of the land owners that will be affected by this project are expecting some issues of compensation to be solved by the Government Commission. I trust that the government commission will fully support our work by solving these issues as soon as possible”, said Robinson.

As foreseen by the plan, the operation at Zhilivodë/Žilivoda is expected to last around four months.

This is just one of the site assessments that EULEX and DFM experts are currently in the process of working on. In the coming week there will be two more site assessments conducted in the Prizren and Klina regions.

Since EULEX experts joined DFM in December 2008, the department has conducted more than 270 field operations. More than 135 missing persons have been found.

Video and photos from the site assessment can be downloaded at the following link:

http://www.eulex-kosovo.eu/en/pressreleases/statement110511.php