WAR GRAVES

García Lorca exhumation case shelved by judge

Granada magistrate argues crimes have expired while denying ruling is “obstacle” to families’ quest

A Granada court has decided to shelve a request for leave to open a tomb in the province in which the remains of the poet Federico García Lorca, who was executed by Nationalist gunmen at the start of the Civil War, are believed to lie. The Supreme Court in March had ruled that responsibility for mass graves during the war and the Franco dictatorship lay with the local authorities where the graves are located.

Among the reasons Judge Aurora Fernández gave for denying the request for exhumation were the ban on retroactivity of legal proceedings as established by the Constitution and the fact that any crime committed was past the statute of limitations. She also based her judgment on the Amnesty Law of 1977.

However, she said her ruling did not constitute a legal “obstacle” to victims of the Civil War and the dictatorship seeking to recover the remains of loved ones who had been killed.

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