Argentinean judge wants Franco-era mass grave dug up

Magistrate requests DNA testing of the remains

An Argentinean judge has asked for a mass grave in Guadalajara, northeast of Madrid, containing the bodies of 17 men executed in November 1939 after the Spanish Civil War ended to be exhumed in order to gather forensic evidence to identify the victims.

Judge María Servini de Cubría was responding to a plea by 88-year-old Spaniard Ascensión Mendieta whose father Timoteo is believed to be one of those buried. Servini de Cubría asked for DNA evidence to be extracted from the remains of the bodies and for the Spanish High Court to organize the taking of DNA from family members of the presumed victims in order to match the two samples. “I have never felt so close to my father since they killed him when I was 13,” Mendieta said when told of the judge’s move.

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