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CMP confirms that operations are running normally

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The Committee on Missing Persons in Cyprus bicommunal excavations resumed on July 2 after the lifting of Covid-19 related restrictions on crossing points, it said on Saturday after reports earlier in the week said it faced problems.

The CMP also confirmed its Anthropological Laboratory resumed its analyses and identification of missing persons on June 22.

CMP’s archaeological teams are currently excavating seven burial sites of which six are located in the north and one in the south of the island. On July 8 the three CMP Members conducted a visit to two excavation sites in the suburbs of Famagusta.

The House refugee committee said on Tuesday the work of the Committee on Missing Persons was being hampered by the recent decisions in the north over checkpoints.

According to the house committee president opposition Akel MP Skevi Koukouma attempts to carry out excavations had been “frozen” by decisions taken in the north about the checkpoints.

The committee also expressed concern that there are still bones in the CMP’s anthropological laboratory but also in the government lab in Engomi.

CMP’s bicommunal scientists employed at the CMP Anthropological Laboratory are currently analysing the remains of 162 individuals. The remains of 74 individuals have been assessed as complex as they are either incomplete or fragmented and necessitate more advanced and specialised genetic analyses.

In some cases, the initial DNA analysis does not provide successful results and new analysis is necessary that is time consuming. The identification of these complex cases may take several years, the committee said.

CMP’s scientists are also trying to overcome challenges such as the lack of informative family reference samples to establish the identification of a missing person. In addition, some of the remains that CMP recovers happen to be archaeological and others are not relevant to CMP’s mandate, it added.

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