A new generation of Cypriots uncovers the missing

Bones are shown in the laboratory of the Committee on Missing Persons in Cyprus (CMP). Identifying human remains is a puzzle for anthropologists and geneticists.

Taking the first steps

Murat Soysal talks to a 95-year old witness at her family farm.
Xenophon Kallis kneels at the edge of a recently-discovered mass grave.

Finding the remains

Clockwise: A map of secret burial sites across the island; Marking the remains at a burial site; Remains are often found in disused water wells.
Recording the remains at a burial site.
Mehmet at an excavation site.
Left: Archaeologist Maria Solomou prepares a numbered ID card prior to photographing a newly discovered grave. Right: Archaeologist Andria Avgoust, centre, works at a new gravesite.

Putting the pieces together

Photis Andronicou (left) and Emine Çetinsel (right) examine remains.
Anthropologist Theodora Eleftheriou pieces together individual bones to establish the age, sex and height of a missing person.

Identifying the missing

Left: Anthropologists record what can be seen on the bones. Right: Bone samples are cut and sent abroad to a specialist laboratory to extract the deceased person’s DNA.
Istenç Engin looks at recorded remains.
Bone samples are sorted.

Laying bodies and mind to rest

Clockwise from top: Psychologist Lisa Zamba comforts the bereaved; Anthropologist Emine Çetinsel at the grave of her grandfather, whose remains she helped identify; Suna Özikiz holds up her own family photo. She is still looking for her father.
At the funeral for a young man killed decades earlier, the family grieves.

A race against time




What we talk about when we talk about development

Love podcasts or audiobooks? Learn on the go with our new app.

Recommended from Medium

Seems Normal But it is Not

The Amazing Arches & Ceilings of Grand Central Station

Archways and Ceilings of Grand Central Station Terminal NYC

Karl Marx and Depression?

Mississippi Spying: These photos show the government’s conspiracy against integration in the South

New Research guides available online in the Music Division of the Library of Congress

The Most Expensive Wrist Watches in The World

Memorabilia and Modernization

Image of a postcard showing Home Moravian Church in Salem, North Carolina.

Legends and Lessons of the Lumberjack

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
UNDP Eurasia

UNDP Eurasia

What we talk about when we talk about development

More from Medium

Introducing Stathis Stathopoulos, a unique and intense musician turning heads

Revenge of the Viking — THE NORTHMAN

European human rights. Still too soft for the Russian judicial armour?

It’s going to be a Porte Crayon kind of summer