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Press Release

Exhumation in Mitrovicë/Mitrovica

06 June 2011

EULEX forensic experts from the Department of Forensic Medicine (DFM) have exhumed the remains of nine individuals suspected of being victims from the Kosovo conflict. The field operation, which has lasted three days, has taken place in the Muslim cemetery in north Mitrovicë/Mitrovica.

Alan Robinson, the Co-Head of the DFM said that he was satisfied with the results so far in the operation. “We are still searching for the remains of at least two more missing persons in this site. The work will continue in the coming days”, said Robinson.

The Mitrovicë/Mitrovica exhumation is the result of intensive document analysis, investigation and several previous site visits. “My team has worked on this case for months. This is a typical example of the thorough and detailed approach needed when searching for the missing. It takes time”, said Robinson.

The exhumation also provided a valuable opportunity to continue the mentoring of the newly-formed local Exhumations Team. The local team members of DFM from the Ministry of Justice actively participated in the operation, under the supervision of the EULEX Forensic Archaeologist.

For the past few months, the EULEX forensic experts have mentored the newly established Exhumations Team.

“The local authorities will eventually assume all duties related to the search for missing persons and for forensic medicine services. The Exhumations Team is a major step towards this goal” Robinson concluded.

Since EULEX experts joined DFM in December 2008, the department has conducted more than 280 field operations. More than 140 missing persons have been found.