SANTA AVELINA, Guatemala – It wasn't only bullets and violence that killed thousands of indigenous people during Guatemala's 1960-1996 civil war.
The government forced tens of thousands of farmers into so-called model villages under strict army control to isolate them from the guerrillas. They were promised health care and other services, but instead were left to die from malnutrition and treatable illnesses. They weren't included in the casualty count in the brutal conflict.
Now, in the hamlet of Santa Avelina, their bodies are being unearthed, identified and reburied. Among the bodies are scores of indigenous children who died from measles in the former model village, where residents lived in small, dirt-floor houses and sermons and Christian hymns were once played from loudspeakers.