Human bones mixed with sand used to de-ice road in Russia
Russian police have launched an investigation after human bones including a skull were mixed were used to de-ice a road in Siberia.
Locals spotted the remains mixed in with sand laid on Partisan Alymov Street in the town of Kirensk, in the south-eastern region of Irkutsk.
It’s thought they could belong to victims of the Russian Civil War, in which an alliance of anti-communist forces tried to topple Vladimir Lenin’s Bolshevik dictatorship from 1917 until the early 1920s.
The region’s Interior Ministry began looking into the matter after people posted pictures of the gruesome find on social media and soon confirmed the bones were human.
No explanation has been offered yet but the incident appears to have been an accident or down to negligence by a private contractor.
Russian news agency Interfax cited an anonymous source familiar with the matter as saying that the sand had been extracted from a site near an old cemetery.
The individual said: ‘The skull is probably about 100 years old. Experts are now studying it and the other bones to determine their exact age and possible origin.’
Local politician Nikolai Trufanov said: ‘I can’t even describe how horrendous this is. I hope the law-enforcement agencies will investigate this as quickly as possible.’
Ironically, the road is named after a local communist Red fighter, Timofei Alymov, who was tasked with keeping gold bullion seized by Lenin’s forces from the Whites.
He was killed by White forces and may have been buried in one of the war graves at the cemetery.
Russians commenting on social media drew parallels with the Kolyma Highway in Russia’s far East, which is often called the Road of Bones due to the estimated 250,000 – 1,000,000 people who died while constructing it.
The workers were forced labourers in the Gulag prison system during the Stalin era and many were buried underneath or beside the road.
The bones in Partisan Alymov Street have been removed, and police are looking into how the contractors procured their grit mixture.
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