Dec 5, 2007

The Juarez killing fields: bodies to be exhumed

Chihuahua state officials launch operation to identify thousands of bodies

Dec. 5, 2007

Special to this blog

Juarez, Mexico - Chihuahua state officials will exhume more than 4,000 bodies buried in common graves in an effort to help identify many of the missing men and women who were reported disappeared between 1991 and 2004.

During that time, between 30 and 60 Americans are among those who disappeared in Juarez without a trace.

Rene Medrano Carrasco, spokesman for the Chihuahua state attorney general's office, said today that over the course of the following year forensic specialists will exhume bodies, take DNA samples, document the samples and store the information.

He said the process will be used to help facilitate the identification of hundreds of bodies. During this time, relatives of the deceased may step forward to see if their DNA matches any of the missing.

The work will begin at San Rafael cemetery, south of the city.

Common graves, or fosas comun, generally are used to bury unclaimed and or unidentified bodies.