War graves to be left to the experts: Policeman

War graves to be left to the experts: Policeman

GOVERNMENT has ordered that the exhumation of human remains from mass graves in the North must be left to the experts, a senior Police officer told The Namibian last week.Deputy Commissioner Joseph Anghuwo said ordinary people who dig up bones might damage them, making it difficult for forensic experts to determine how many bodies were buried there.

He said it was agreed that all mass graves found in future should just be marked and left for forensic investigators to exhume. “People have dug out the bones with a Caterpillar, you know,” said Anghuwo.Five war graves have been found at Eenhana, one at Ongha and one at Epuku in the Ohangwena Region, while 11 have been discovered in the Omusati Region.Ten days ago, team of South African forensic experts arrived at Oshakati to help with the investigations.Many of the graves have been linked to April 1 1989, the day when UN Resolution 435 on Namibian Independence came into effect.On that day, fighting broke out between Swapo’s military wing, the People’s Liberation army of Namibia (Plan) and South African colonial forces in the North.In the ensuing ‘nine-day war’, hundreds of Swapo fighters were killed.”People have dug out the bones with a Caterpillar, you know,” said Anghuwo.Five war graves have been found at Eenhana, one at Ongha and one at Epuku in the Ohangwena Region, while 11 have been discovered in the Omusati Region.Ten days ago, team of South African forensic experts arrived at Oshakati to help with the investigations.Many of the graves have been linked to April 1 1989, the day when UN Resolution 435 on Namibian Independence came into effect.On that day, fighting broke out between Swapo’s military wing, the People’s Liberation army of Namibia (Plan) and South African colonial forces in the North.In the ensuing ‘nine-day war’, hundreds of Swapo fighters were killed.

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