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UPDATED: 11:23, May 31, 2007
Estonia provides Red Army soldiers' DNA samples for Russia, Ukraine
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Preliminary DNA testing on remains of 12 Red Army soldiers uncovered at a Soviet-era war memorial will be conducted in Russia and Ukraine, reports from the Estonian capital of Tallin said Wednesday.

Estonia has provided all the DNA samples of the remains for Russia and Ukraine, where forensic experts will determine their identities in comparison with DNA samples of the soldiers' relatives, a spokesman for the Defense Ministry told the Baltic News Service (BNS).

Estonian authorities will check and confirm the final results of the testing, said the spokesman.

Three soldiers' relatives had sent their DNA samples to Russian authorities, saying they hoped to rebury the remains in their homeland, the BNS quoted the Russian newspaper Komsomol Pravda as reporting.

On May 7, the Estonian Foreign Ministry notified Russia of the latest development of the Red Army monument's removal.

The remains will be reburied in a military cemetery in Tallin, the ministry said, hoping that Russia will inform Estonian authorities by June 7 of the list of the relatives who intend to attend the funerals.

On April 26 the Estonian government ordered the removal of the Soldier Liberator monument located in Tynismyagi Square, which commemorates Soviet soldiers killed during World War II.

The move triggered violent protests from ethnic Russians in the Baltic country and drew strong criticism from Russia.

Source: Xinhua

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