Skulls with bullet-like holes excavated in Mannaar mass grave, women and children among victims

[TamilNet, Thursday, 19 July 2018, 23:22 GMT]
Human skeletons of massacred people including children and women embracing each other have emerged in the 37 day-long excavations of the brutal massacre site discovered at the entrance to the Tamil-speaking city of Mannaar island, which has been under the control of the Sinhala military. There was no doubt the slain victims were subjected to a brutal massacre, said an excavator on condition of anonymity. The excavators have discovered gunshot holes in the skulls. A young person's skeleton was found along with the skeleton of an embracing adult, visibly exposing the brutality of the massacre. So far, the unearthed skeletal remains give a head count of 29. However, the extent of the killing field is still expanding, possibly reaching out of the premises.

Mannaar mass grave photographed on 37th day of excavation
Mannaar mass grave photographed on 37th day of excavation
Mannaar mass grave photographed on 37th day of excavation

Mannaar mass grave photographed on 37th day of excavation
In an apparent move to sabotage the investigations, the SL Police was set to file an application urging Mannaar Magistrate T.J. Prabaharan to move a special motion to send one of the 43 boxes, in which the excavated human skeletons are kept in a sealed state by the courts, to the lab of the University of Colombo.

The University of Colombo is an institution under the control of the SL unitary mechanism. There is a danger of concealing, falsifying, or destroying the crucial evidence, Tamil rights activists warned. The unitary state in Colombo is unilaterally controlling the affairs, and its institutions will try to sabotage the investigations.

The representatives of the families of people subjected to enforced disappearances have urged the Tamil politicians, the Northern Provincial Council and the civil society in the North-East to demand an independent international third-party expertise to investigate the Mannaar killing fields with necessary forensic anthropological analysis as well as carrying out forensic archaeological examinations including radiocarbon dating.

Furthermore, they described the mass graves discovered in Mannaar island as well as in the mainland earlier as Mannaar killing fields where the occupying Sinhala soldiers had willfully killed innocent civilians as part of a systematic attack against Eezham Tamils.

The exhumation is taking place at the premises of the now dismantled Co-operative Wholesale Establishment (CWE). SL military was known to have used the CWE premises for more than a decade during the times of war.

Mannaar mass grave photographed on 37th day of excavation

In the meantime, Mannaar Magistrate has instructed the SL Government Agent of Mannaar to provide all the historical data regarding the building, especially who have been in possession of the building since the laying of the foundation stone in 1967 to date.

Ceylon Marketing Department was the first owner of the building, according to available information. There has also been a bank operating for some years at the building before it was used as a marketing outlet of the Co-operative Wholesale Establishment. Furthermore, the SL military was using the premises during the times of war.

Mannaar mass grave photographed on 37th day of excavation



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