Bosnian Families Hope Grave Discovery Will End Search for Bodies

At the exhumation were diggers and personnel from the Missing Persons Institute and the prosecution, as well as State Investigation and Protection Agency investigators and labourers who were digging up the hidden grave. They announced as Vranovic and BIRN's reporter arrived that they had just found a fourth skull.

For Vranovic, the visit was personal; he has been searching for his missing father Salko for 29 years. Whenever a new grave is found, it brings new hope that he might finally find and bury his father's body.

"Each new discovery is always emotional, because you always think about whether they have found the person you are looking for or someone from your family," said Vranovic, who is also a member of the advisory board of the Missing Persons Institute.

Detained, tortured and killed

Investigators at the grave site in Dobro Polje this week. Photo: BIRN.

At the beginning of the war in 1992, local Bosniaks in Kalinovik were captured and detained at the Miladin Radojevic School and in other buildings in the town, where some were tortured and killed.

On August 5, 1992, around 25 Bosniak detainees who were being held at the Gunpowder Depot building, an ammunitions warehouse in Kalinovik, were taken away by Serb soldiers.

They were tied up, severely beaten and forced to sing Serb nationalist Chetnik songs as they were transported under police escort to the village of Ratine in the Foca municipality, where they were killed.

Vranovic said that his father was seized in Kalinovik in 1992 after the Serb-led Crisis Committee in the area called for all Bosniaks to gather in front of the municipal building to join a work detail.

His father was detained for 11 days at the Miladin Radojevic school and...

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