Mass Grave Exhumation and Identification
Kenyon’s expert anthropologists and forensic investigators can assist you with the location, exhumation, identification and repatriation of deceased individuals from military, historical, temporary and post-conflict mass grave sites.
Military Grave Sites:
These may be individual or group recoveries, where the dead were interred in temporary graves that later became permanent. In many cases, due to technological limitations, the deceased may not be properly identified. Kenyon teams, working with military and national authorities, can disinter, identify and repatriate to family for dignified disposition or to a national war cemetery.
Historical Mass Graves:
These are typically discovered during major building projects; once exhumed, the deceased are reinterred elsewhere to allow building projects to resume. These mass graves may often also used to provide information on early diseases and environmental studies.
Temporary Mass Graves:
Often done in the immediate aftermath of a natural disaster where local people lack the resources for temporary storage of the dead and must resort to mass burials. Working alongside various humanitarian and non-governmental organisations, Kenyon teams will ensure the deceased are properly identified and given a dignified and respectful disposition.
Post-Conflict Mass Graves:
Post-conflict grave sites can be very dangerous as they are often surrounded by unexploded munitions and may even have chemical weapons contamination. Additionally, bodies may have been deliberately damaged to make identifications difficult or hide signs of abuse. Our teams will work with national and local humanitarian agencies, the families and, if convened, war crime investigators and prosecutors - most often out of the Hague - to establish operations and a system that can be transitioned to local government over time.