Human bones of Cretan commandos or pilots found in Cyprus

According to, Presidential Commissioner for Humanitarian Issues, Mr. Photis Photiou, announced that human bones were found in Makedonitissa Tomb.

Crews started an excavation of the man-made earth hill a month ago.

Authorities believe that inside the fuselage are the remains of up to 19 Greek commandos who were killed in the crash.

The aircraft was part of a secret mission from Greece to send reinforcements to the Greek Cypriot National Guard fighting advancing Turkish troops, invading Cyprus on July 20, 1974. The plane was shot down on July 22 by friendly fire as Greek Cypriot soldiers mistook it for a hostile aircraft. All but one of its airmen were killed. Thirty-two men were on board the Noratlas.

The Council of Ministers decided in February 2014 to proceed with the excavations for Noratlas following a case against the Republic of Cyprus brought before the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in 2007 by the families of two Greek military officers who perished in Noratlas. The Court unanimously declared the application by the families of the dead airmen inadmissible.

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