Feb 18, 2019

Truth of Mannar mass grave to be unspooled on Wednesday!

Judicial Medical Officer, Sameendra Rajapakse said that the report of the samples on the Mannar mass grave sent to the Florida Carbon Testing Laboratory was received yesterday morning (16).

According to Rajapakse, the carbon testing laboratory has issued results of five out of six samples of the mass grave.

The relevant reports will be issued to the media after producing before the Mannar Magistrate's Court on Wednesday (20).

The bone fragments of six skeletons were sent to the carbon testing laboratories collected from the mass grave and reports of five fragments have already been received and the report on the other sample will be available in the future, he said.

The mass grave was being investigated for the 147th day yesterday (17), and 323 human skeletal remains were discovered, and 314 human skeletal remains have been unearthed so far, including bone fragments of 28 children.

Six samples were sent to the carbon laboratories in Florida on January 23.

The Judicial Medical Officer said that the lab had been informed to submit the report on the carbon investigation data to him and the Mannar Magistrate Court in writing.

The sample bone fragments were taken before a group of forensic experts, Senior Professor of archeology of the Kelaniya University Raj Somadeva, representatives of the office of missing persons, government analyst’s department officers, relatives of the missing people in the Mannar district representatives and a group of state counsels under the orders of the Magistrate of Mannar.

Rajapaksa said that the bone fragments were gathered ensuring transparency with the participation of all parties and precision was maintained to highest noble end.

Investigations were launched into the mass grave after soil removed from Emil Nagar, Mannar had skeletal remains on March 26. The soil was removed as old Sathosa building was demolished.

The Mannar Police had informed the Mannar Magistrate's Court about the human skeletal remains and on the orders of Mannar Magistrate A. A. Alexraja measures were taken to excavate the place.

Investigations are being carried out by Senior Prof. Raj Somadeva and the Judicial Medical Officer Dr. Sameendra Rajapaksa, Mannar Police Officers, Mannar Judicial Officers and Government Analyst Department’s Officers under the orders of the Mannar Magistrate T. Sarawanaraja.

Archeology professor Raj Somadeva, said that there was no definite carbon dating has been done on human skeletons found at the old Sathosa Building in Mannar.

When examining the mass grave, it was identified that in a part of the grave some bone fragments are in an order and elsewhere they were placed in an irregular manner, he said.

He also said that bones observed are placed quite different to a traditional cemetery.

Madhawa Kulasooriya - Vavuniya correspondent

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