United Nations Command holds repatriation ceremony Wednesday

6 years ago
The United Nations Command held a special repatriation ceremony Wednesday at South Korea's Osan U.S. Air Base for the remains of U.S. soldiers killed during the Korean war.
They were retrieved from North Korea last Friday and are now on their way to Hawaii for DNA identification.
Park Ji-won reports.

A solemn ceremony was held at Osan U.S. Air Base Wednesday evening,... commemorating the return of 55 sets of remains believed to be American troops killed during the Korean War.
About five hundred key military officials from Seoul and Washington attended the ceremony,... including South Korea's defense chief Song Young-moo, UNC Commander General Vincent Brooks,... and U.S. ambassador to South Korea, Harry Harris.
In his speech,... General Brooks said,... it is a cherished duty to send those who went missing in action during the war back to their families and countries.

"Encouraged by recent cooperation with North Korea on this humanitarian effort that enabled the transfer of 55 sets of remains on the 27th of July, last Friday, we have gathered as the successors of United Nations Command in the Republic of Korea, and as the beneficiaries of the noble sacrifices of those who for a short while longer will remain nameless-yet in our presence to render ou final salutes to them."

55 caskets draped in the UN flag were loaded onto two U.S. Air Force C-17 aircraft, which took off Wednesday evening, Korea time,... heading to Hawaii for DNA identification.
The remains had already been given a preliminary forensic review at Osan Air Base.
According to the United Nations Command, North Korea has recovered and sent an estimated 629 sets of U.S. war remains to the U.S. since 1990.
Meanwhile, speaking before the ceremony at the Osan base,... a laboratory director at the U.S. Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency confirmed to reporters that an American identification tag was turned over by the North with the remains,... and the family of the fallen soldier has already been notified.
The agency official said the ID tag will be returned to the family in the upcoming weeks.
Park Ji-won, Arirang News.