Remains of WWI soldiers found in French mass grave
Sunday, June 1, 2008
The remains of 170 Australian troops who died in the have been found in a mass grave outside of the town of , France. A dig is underway to recover the remains and identify the soldiers. It is slated to take two weeks.
Early ground studies raised the possibility thatcould be buried at the site, prompting the use of metal detectors to probe for potential hazards. So far, only metal studs, buttons and belt buckles have been found.
Tim Whitford, who is overseeing the dig, said "If the blokes are recovered we'd like to see every effort made to see them identified and I would like to see them given a dignified military funeral. Those are honours they have deserved for over 90 years."
Fought during July 19-20, 1916, the Battle of Fromelles was a complete disaster for the Germans achieving a decisive victory and the Australians sustaining over 5,000 casualties in less than a day. Following the battle, the Germans dug eight 40-meter long pits to bury the dead Allied soldiers. Five of the eight pits are thought to contain Australian soldiers, while the other three appear to contain battlefield debris., with the
- Australian Associated Press. "Unexploded shells may hamper grave dig" — , May 31, 2008
- Paola Totaro. "Grave at Fromelles unearths political minefield" — , May 31, 2008
- Australian Associated Press. "Search begins for Fromelles Diggers" — , May 27, 2008
- "Mystery of Great War's lost army uncovered" — , July 23, 2007