Mannar skeletal remains to Florida for carbon dating | Sunday Observer

Mannar skeletal remains to Florida for carbon dating

Excavation site near the Sathosa building in Mannar
Excavation site near the Sathosa building in Mannar

A part of the skeletal remains found at the recently discovered mass grave in Mannar will be shipped to Florida in the United States for radiocarbon dating, Judicial Medical Officer of the General Hospital, Mannar, Dr. Saminda Rajapaksa told the Sunday Observer.

According to him, approvals for the process have now been requested from the Mannar Magistrate’s Court. “If we do receive approvals, the process will be carried out through the Ministry of Justice and Prison Reforms,” he said. Radiocarbon dating will help determine the age of the skeletal remains. Skeletal remains believed to belong to 54 people have been unearthed by yesterday from the recently discovered mass grave in Mannar.

According to Dr. Rajapaksa, the team had unearthed female and male skeletal remains as well as remains believed to be that of five children.

He said skeletal remains keep appearing and excavations will continue till they uncover all such remains. Excavations have also revealed pieces of pottery and pearls.

“Some remains appear to have suspicious lacerations made with sharp objects,” he said, adding that, however, the cause cannot be determined without further analysis. Investigations have also revealed that some skeletal remains had been placed in a methodical manner in one part of the grave, but in another part of the grave, the placement of the remains was irregular.

He said 34 of 53 skeletal remains that had been unearthed have been sealed and placed at the Mannar Magistrate’s Court. The excavations of the site are being done under the supervision of Mannar Magistrate T.G. Prabhakaran.

The excavations of the site began after some skeletal remains were found while workers were digging to lay the foundation for the Sathosa building in March.

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