A Sri Lankan family has found the remains of at least nine bodies buried in the garden of their home in the former stronghold of the LTTE in the north, police said on Saturday.

Senior Superintendent of Police Ajith Rohana said the remains had been found in the garden of the house at Puthukudyiruppu in Mullaithivu district.

“Skulls of at least nine people were found on Thursday evening during the clearing work of the garden. The parts have been taken away by the judicial medical officer of the Jaffna hospital for further investigations,” Mr. Rohana said.

“It is a well-known fact that the LTTE did all they could to hide deaths in order to prevent people uprising and maintain their cadre’s morale high. The skeletal remains found recently near a former LTTE-held area could very well be such dead buried secretly,” military spokesman Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasooriya said.

Red Cross to conduct survey

A needs assessment survey for families of individuals, who disappeared during the civil war in Sri Lanka will be carried out by the International Committee of the Red Cross.

The survey would begin in April and is scheduled to get completed by the end of the year, said Sarasi Wijeratne, ICRC’s spokesperson.

The ICRC has received 16,000 complaints of disappearances since 1990.

As many as 4,500 of such complaints had come from the families of the Sri Lankan troops.

Sri Lankan government in August 2013 launched its own probe panel to compile details of the disappeared persons.

They are currently conducting public hearings. Some 16,000 complaints had been received by the three-member panel till mid-February.