Gambia stops exhuming bodies from ‘mass graves’

Gambia has stopped exhuming bodies from graves in suspected secret burial sites used by former President Yahya Jammeh to bury his perceived enemies.

The country is facing challenges in identifying the bodies due to lack of forensics experts and equipment.

Authorities say they do not also want to tamper with evidence critical to the prosecution of those accused of taking part in the killings.

“We have not stopped investigations but we have halted exhuming bodies because of inadequate forensic experts and equipment to protect the integrity of the evidence,” said Police Minister, Mai Ahmad Fatty.

Gambia’s police recently received forensics training from the FBI and French police. They also received some equipment.

Authorities have exhumed at least four bodies, including that of a former U.S. Army Captain Njaga Jagne.

Gambia’s new government is assuring victims and their families of justice and vows to send to prison those found guilty of committing heinous crimes.

They are urging victims and families to cooperate and support the process of achieving justice without flaunting due process and the rule of law.

“We will continue to investigate, notwithstanding the transitional justice program. We will continue to investigate mass graves and we will continue our forensic examinations and we will need your support.” Minister Fatty said.

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