The Balearic and Catalonian governments have taken the first step in a joint accord to exhume the Civil War mass grave at Sa Coma beach. It is believed that up to 500 Republicans were buried there.
On Friday, the regional culture minister, Fanny Tur, and Catalonia's minister for external affairs, Raül Romeva, visited the area of the beach where the grave is located. An historian, Antoni Tugores, and a resident of Sa Coma since the 1950s, Sebastià Pascual, gave information about the grave. Pascual explained that, following a heavy storm, he found various human remains by the beach and informed the Guardia Civil. Tugores said that it is known that barges used for landing at the beach were also used to take bodies away.
The landing at this part of the eastern coast was on 16 August, 1936. It was the expedition led by Captain Alberto Bayo against the Nationalists. The grave is where a large number of the Republicans who took part in that landing are buried. They would have been mainly Catalans but also Majorcans and Minorcans. It is also thought that some Nationalist soldiers were buried in the same area.
The two governments agreed that the first step should be to install signage in order to publicise the existence of the grave and to give it dignity. Requests from families would constitute a further and essential step before initiating the process of exhumation. Romeva noted that five requests have been received from relatives of Republicans who are understood to have been buried at Sa Coma.
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