This Thursday the Falkland Islands Government signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between FIG, the UK Government, and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).
The new MOU extends an agreement originally signed on 13 May 2021 which will seek to identify human remains buried in grave C.1.10 in the Argentine Cemetery near Darwin.
Today’s extension defines how the ICRC will support the Royal Falkland Islands Police’s investigation at Teal Inlet, in order to determine whether a report of an unmarked war grave containing Argentine soldiers is accurate.
A team of six experts from the ICRC is scheduled to arrive in the Falkland Islands on 9 August in order to carry out the work at the cemetery and at Teal Inlet. They will quarantine first at the Malvina House Hotel, before moving to Darwin House. As all team members are doubly vaccinated, they intend to make use of the ‘5 day test to release’ option.
Chair of the Legislative Assembly, MLA Leona Roberts, said: “Once again we are welcoming the ICRC to the Falkland Islands to carry out this vital work. As with previous phases, we feel it is very important to uphold our humanitarian duty to ensure – as much as is possible – that no one remains unaccounted for.
Back in 1982 this type of DNA technology simply did not exist, so it is right that we are taking the opportunity now to do this work, via the ICRC as an independent intermediary. As we have said before, we will continue to provide our assistance in the months ahead, treating this next phase with the same level of dignity and sympathy as we have done in the past.”
The original HPP (Humanitarian Project Plan) was established in 2017 and led to the DNA identification of 115 Argentine soldiers who died during the Falkland Islands War, and were previously buried in unnamed graves.