Mar 24, Colombo: A decision has been taken to halt the excavations of the Mannar mass grave in Northern Province for three months, Chief Investigating officer Senior Judicial Medical Officer Dr. Shaminda Rajapakse said.
The decision has been reached at a discussion held into late Friday on the next steps to be taken regarding further excavations after carbon dating studies found that the bone samples obtained from the human skeletal remains were found to be belonged to a time period between 1499 and 1720 A.D
The discussion was headed by the Mannar Magistrate and a team of Judicial Medical experts, a team of archaeologists headed by Dr. Raj Somadeva, Saliya Peiris, the Chairman of the Office on Missing Persons and another member, the police, the STF and some of the relatives of the disappeared have participated.
Prof. Raj Somadeva has agreed to provide a report on the archaeological analysis of the excavations done so far within three months and after having received the report, another discussion will be held to decide on the next steps.
At the discussion it was also informed that more reports are to be received regarding the matter.
Although the excavations have been temporarily suspended for three months, the security has been strengthened and scientific measures would be taken to prevent the deterioration of the excavated skeletal, Judicial Medical Officer Dr. Shaminda Rajapakse said Rajapaksa said.