Monday, March 29, 2010

Iraq unable to deal with numerous post-Saddam mass graves

Iraq unable to deal with numerous mass graves

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A senior Iraqi official says Baghdad does not have the means and expertise to deal with the high numbers of mass graves being discovered.

Ayam Sharif, the head of the Department of Terror and Victims at the Ministry of Human Rights, said that 84 mass graves were discovered in the country last year, all of which held victims of the post-Saddam violence that has rent the fabric of the country.

According to Ms. Sharif, those 84 graves were found in only two Iraqi provinces, Baghdad and Diyala which leads one to speculate as to how many mass burials might still be lying undiscovered in other provinces.

"Last year we discovered 45 graves in the capital Baghdad and 39 in the Province of Diyala," Iraq's Azzaman newspaper quoted her as saying.

This is the largest number of mass graves reported to have been unearthed in the country in one year.

The ministry has set up a new section called the Department of Mass Graves to deal with the issue.

It includes specialists in archaeology, forensic medicine, chemistry and the media.

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