A committee charged with uncovering the fate missing Cypriots has apologized to a family for giving them bone fragments that didn't belong to their loved one.

The United Nations-led Committee on Missing Persons said Thursday that some small bones were "incorrectly associated" with the deceased from a Greek Cypriot family.

The Committee said two independent experts brought in to review the case have affirmed the reliability of the identification process, but promised to heed recommendations to improve it.

The man's remains had been comingled with bones of others in a mass grave. Officials had said it's too costly to identify all bone fragments through DNA analysis.

Some 1,500 Greek Cypriots and 500 Turkish Cypriots vanished in fighting that followed the 1974 Turkish invasion that split the island along ethnic lines.