News24

WW2 mass grave unearthed

2009-10-02 22:25

Zagreb - Forensics experts in Croatia have unearthed a mass grave containing the remains of 48 people executed by the Yugoslav Communist regime towards the end of the Second World War, the Hina agency reported on Friday.

The remains were found on the southern Adriatic island of Daksa, just off the city of Dubrovnik, Hina said. They had been taken to Dubrovnik in the hope of identifying them.

A local non-governmental organisation said at least 45 Dubrovnik inhabitants were executed on Daksa in October 1944 after the city was liberated from pro-Nazi Croats by future Yugoslav leader Josip Broz Tito and his comrades.

The Catholic Church of Croatia's new agency IJA said that seven priests were among those executed.

The head of the Croatian branch of the Helsinki Committee for Human Rights, Ivo Banac, called on the local authorities to bring those who carried out the killings to justice as they are believed still to be alive.

"Nothing has been done until now to establish what happened on this island in October 1944," Banac said.

Hundreds of thousands of Serbs, Roma and Jews were killed by the pro-Nazi Croatian regime which was overthrown by Tito's partisans.