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Nearly 400 bodies of tsunami victims unidentified

By Xinhua,

Bangkok : A total of 388 bodies of tsunami victims remain unidentified after four years, the Thai Tsunami Victim Identification and Repatriation Center in Thailand’s Phangnga said on Wednesday ahead of the fourth anniversary of the tsunami on Dec. 26.

Center director Nitinai Sornsongkram said that the center received 3,696 bodies in February 2005 and 3,308 bodies were identified, and retrieved by their relatives.

Nitinai affirmed that the agency workers are still trying to identify the bodies and to return them to their families as soon as they can.

At present, there are 445 still missing persons who have been reported by their relatives. Of these, 290 are Thais, 95 are Myanmar migrant workers and 60 are Scandinavians.

Indonesia, India, Sri Lanka and Thailand were all hard hit by the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami triggered by an earthquake with a magnitude of about nine on the Richter scale.

More than 5,000 people, mostly international tourists on holiday, were killed when the killer waves struck Thailand’s six Andaman coastal provinces.