They find the remains of 215 children in a Canadian school where there was a former boarding school

An expert discovered human remains last weekend using a georadar near Kamloops, in the western province of British Columbia.

The boarding school was rebuilt and today it is a school.Andrew SnucinsAP

The remains of 215 children were found buried at the site of a former boarding school in Canada, built more than a century ago. to integrate indigenous people into the dominant society, according to a local Amerindian community. An expert discovered the human remains last weekend using a georadar at the site where the boarding school was located, near Kamloops, in the western province of British Columbia, according to the Aboriginal community Tk’emlups te Secwepemc, in a statement from press.

“Some were barely three years old,” he said. Rosanne Casimiro, head of the community, about the children. According to her, her death, whose cause and date are unknown, was never registered by the boarding school’s management, although her disappearance had already been mentioned in the past by members of that community. Preliminary results of the investigation are expected to be published in a report in June, Casimir said.

Meanwhile, the community is working with the province’s forensic physician and museums to try to shed light on the find and find any documentation related to the deaths. “It breaks my heart,” Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau reacted on Twitter. “It is a sad memory of this dark and regrettable chapter in our history. My thoughts go out to all those affected by this heartbreaking news,” wrote the president, who has made reconciliation with the first peoples of Canada one of his priorities since took office in 2015.

The old boarding school, managed by the Catholic Church on behalf of the Canadian government, was one of the 139 institutions of this type created in the country at the end of the 19th century. It opened in 1890 and grew to 500 students in the 1950s. It closed its doors in 1969. Some 150,000 Amerindian, mestizo, and Inuit children were forcibly recruited into these schools, where they were removed from their families, their language, and their language. culture.

Many were subdued to mistreatment or sexual abuse, and at least 3,200 died, mostly from tuberculosis, according to the findings of a national commission of inquiry. The commission heard testimony from several Native Americans who said that the poverty, alcoholism, domestic violence, and high suicide rates that still plague many of their communities are largely the legacy of the residential school system.

In 1910, the director of the Kamloops institution complained that the Canadian government did not provide sufficient funds to “adequately feed the students,” according to the community statement. Ottawa formally apologized to the survivors of the internees in 2008 as part of a CAD 1.9 billion (€ 1.3 billion) deal. The latter were victims of a “cultural genocide,” according to the national commission of inquiry in 2015.

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