A Bosnia-based commission that has pioneered a DNA-based system to find and identify the remains of people missing in conflicts and natural disasters will become a permanent global body helping track down millions of missing around the world.

The International Commission on Missing Persons was established in 1996 to help find people missing from the Yugoslav wars. So far it has found and identified 70 percent of the 40,000 missing people. That achievement is "unprecedented" the head of the ICMP, Kathryne Bomberger, told The Associated Press on Thursday.

She said the institution will be granted permanent international legal status this month. The expertise developed by the ICMP and the Bosnian government will become a global model for countries with missing persons problems.