TUZLA, Bosnia-Herzegovina – Forensic experts have recovered the remains of 213 victims of Europe's worst massacre since World War II (search), an official said Tuesday.
The mass grave in the northeastern Bosnia village of Liplje has so far been found to contain "212 incomplete (bodies) and one complete body," said Murat Hurtic, the head of the forensic team.
In 1995, Serb troops overran the eastern Bosnian enclave of Srebrenica (search), which had been declared a safe zone by the United Nations, and killed as many as 8,000 Muslim men and boys.
The bodies found Tuesday were originally buried elsewhere but later dug up by bulldozer and moved to Liplje (search) to cover up the massacre, Hurtic said. About 1,000 victims were found in four other mass graves previously discovered in Liplje, Hurtic said.
After the remains are found, DNA is extracted from the bones of victims and matched with DNA from living relatives. Thousands of victims from the 1992-95 Bosnian war have been identified this way, Hurtic said.
Over the years, U.N. and local forensics experts in Bosnia have exhumed 16,500 bodies from more than 300 mass graves. Thousands of people remain missing and are presumed dead.
About 260,000 people were killed and 1.8 million driven from their homes during the 1992-1995 war, which pitted Bosnia's Muslims, Catholic Croats and Orthodox Serbs against one another.