USA identifies two sets of Korean War remains, says Mattis

Elias Hubbard
September 14, 2018

Scientists have identified two of the sets of remains of USA troops killed in the Korean War that were recently returned by North Korea, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Tuesday.

Mattis told reporters at the Pentagon on Tuesday that experts chose to focus on these two sets of remains as they thought "they had a better chance", considering reasons including where the remains had been found and the background Washington had.

However, the sets of bones from the two soon-to-be-identified troops are far more complete.

"The United States and the DPRK commit to recovering POW/MIA remains, including the immediate repatriation of those already identified", the declaration reads.

"We will notify the family first", John Byrd, the director of scientific analysis at the US Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency explained to Reuters Monday. One individual is believed to be African American, based on the remains.

Between 1996 and 2005, the USA worked with North Korea and recovered around 400 caskets of remains, though Washington halted the cooperation in 2005 as it could not guarantee the safety of its personnel.

North Korea returned the remains this summer after President Trump's summit with North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un.

Nevertheless, according to the U.S, the identifications process is anticipated to chip away at least 7,699 USA troops who remain unaccounted for in the Korean War.

Other tables included personal objects from soldiers that don't have any identification on them, including buttons, canteens and old boots.

Both service members died in late 1950 near the Chongchon River, in present-day North Korea, where the US suffered heavy casualties, DPAA officials said.

On Monday, the Pentagon said United Nations military officials met with North Korean counterparts last week to discuss the repatriation of additional remains.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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