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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: 510-00
August 17, 2000

REMAINS OF U.S. SERVICEMEN RECOVERED IN NORTH KOREA

Remains believed to be those of 14 American servicemen, missing in action from the Korean War, will be repatriated Saturday, Aug. 19, Korea time.

The remains will be flown on a U.S. Air Force aircraft from Pyongyang, North Korea, to Yokota Air Base, Japan, under escort of a uniformed U.S. honor guard.

A United Nations Command repatriation ceremony will be held at Yokota. The following week the remains will be flown to Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii. Following a U.S. Pacific Command ceremony there, the remains will be transferred to the U.S. Army Central Identification Laboratory (CILHI) for forensic examination and positive identification.

A joint U.S.-North Korean investigation team recovered the remains, the largest number recovered during a single operation to date. The 20-person U.S. team is composed primarily of specialists from CILHI.

This recovery operation is the 14th in North Korea since 1996. Three more are scheduled for this year, with the fifth operation scheduled to conclude on Veterans Day, Nov. 11, 2000. Joint U.S. - North Korean teams have recovered 26 sets of remains so far this year, surpassing the total in any single, full year of operations.

Of the 88,000 U.S. servicemembers missing in action from all conflicts, more than 8,100 are from the Korean War.