Digging into the past in Prijedor
A new tentative excavation of a suspected mass grave of victims from the Bosnian war started on April 9, near Prijedor in Central Bosnia and Herzegovina. According to a local victims association, Izvor, some 500 people from the area are still considered missing, more than twenty years on. Some of the biggest mass graves of the region have already been discovered. But until now, no memorial has been built.
State prosecutors ordered the excavation in Donji Vakuf near the farm of the Elkaz family. Selvedin (28), whose family house is right by the digging, lost members of his own family during the war two uncles and a grandfather. 'We found them in mass graves in the village years after the war. I hope they will find something here on my property. These people need to find rest, as well as their families. And I know how it feels, ' Selvedin said.
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Local authorities said they received a tip from a Serb. The Missing Persons Institute of Bosnia and Herzegovina the state institution responsible for searching for and identifying missing people found confirmation from a couple more people that the tip could be true. According to investigators from the Institute, up to 150 bodies of victims are expected to be found around the location.