International Red Cross


argentina-falklands-soldiersPhoto taken June 18, 2017 by the International Committee of the Red Cross, ICRC, Asier izaguirre Pasaban, a forensic logistician with the IRC, works at the Argentine memorial cemetery containing the remains of 237 Argentine combatants killed during the 1982 war between Argentina and Britain, in Darwin, on the Falkland Islands. A forensics team from ICRC exhumed on Tuesday June 20 the first body of an unidentified Argentine soldier buried in a military cemetery on the Falkland Islands.

When I returned last week there was a delegation from the International Red Cross who were travelling to the Falkland Islands to conduct DNA sampling at the Argentine burial ground in Darwin.

An interesting group of people they have a very difficult task ahead. Exhuming bodies and, after testing, reburying them in the mid winter of the South Atlantic must be a tough job.

They will stay in the Darwin house hotel which has been reopened for this purpose and the Cemetery will be closed until late September 2017.

Its a very difficult job but seems so important and I for one am glad there are organisations like this who are prepared to undertake this work. My thoughts go to the parents of the children lost in this terrible war. I know my friends on the Falklands, who still hate what happened, will support this work. The Islanders stories of survival and bravery inspire me. At the same time I can’t help feeling that the parents of these young soldiers deserve to know where their children were buried.

As this project gets under way in Argentina there are further moves to claim sovereignty as a group attends the UN decolonisation group to put their case. Surely its time for Argentina to accept the Islanders rights to self determination. Peace between these two countries would perhaps enable more Argentine families to come here to visit the graves of their sons. I wonder if the Islanders felt less under threat if they would be able to have more conversations with the families of the soldiers?