April 15, 2024

DPAA team recovers evidences of missing US personnel in Arunachal

TAP | Updated: May 31, 2017

KOLKATA, May 31: The US Department of Defence Prisoner of War/Missing in Action According Agency has conducted field activities in Arunachal Pradesh in search of US personnel missing during World War II.

The DPAA team stumbled across evidences of remains that were subsequently examined by a Joint Forensic Review Committee comprising both DPAA and Anthropological Survey of India (AnSI) members during the field activities from November 1 - December 14, 2016.

On December 7, 2016, the committee determined that the remains were possibly co-related to US, a DPAA team member told an audience comprising media and students/researchers at the American Center here today.

In June 2017, DPAA personnel will take the evidence from Kolkata to the US laboratory in Honolulu, Hawaii, US for analysis, the member said.

The activity marked the seventh mission pertaining to 'US unaccounted for personnel' conducted in India.

Past missions included - three recovery missions during 2008 and 2009 in Arunachal Pradesh, one investigation in Tripura in 2013, one investigation in Assam and Nagaland in 2014, one recovery mission in Arunachal in 2015.

Turning to DPAA's worldwide drive, the member said today it was focussed on the research, investigation and recovery for approximately 28,000 missing Americans from World War II era as well as the subsequent Korean War, the Cold War, the Vietnam War and past conflicts in Iraq.

Meghan-Tomasita Cosgriff-Hermandez, forensic Archaeologist at the DPAA, said at the function, "We are a world-class workforce which fulfills our nation's obligation by maximising the number of missing personnel accounted for while ensuring timely, accurate information is provided to their families."

The investigation team adopted three-pronged approach - investigation, recovery and identification - to track the whereabouts of Americans involved in World War II (1941-45), Korean War (1950-53), Vietnam War (1962-1973), she said.

"In the search places we looked for possible human biological remains (bone, tooth, soft tissue or hair) and non-biological material evidences (personal items, life support equipment, aircraft wreckage)," she said. PTI