THESSALONIKI — The remains of Greek soldiers from Western Macedonia who died during the Greek-Italian war of 1940-1941 in Albania will be identified through blood samples provided by living relatives in the region, authorities said on Friday.
Western Macedonia regional director George Kassapidis, whose initiative this is, will coordinate with other subregions and metropolitan areas in the efforts to send samples to the 401st Military Hospital's Center of Molecular Biology, which will do the analysis.
Relatives who may give blood are divided into matrilineal or patrilineal lines, and who is eligible is detailed in the related documents. Two blood samples per relative will be collected at home by "Help at Home" staff and volunteers of the township, overseen by medical associations, as of September.
The collection will be covered by the Region of Western Macedonia, which has set up coordinating centers for information to relativs.
Of the total 13,936 Greek soldiers and officers who died or went missing in Albania during the Greek-Italian war, less than half (5,960) have been returned and buried in military hospitals in Greece, while the remains of 7,796 have been buried or left at battle fields in Albania. Among the latter are 897 individuals who originate from Western Macedonia and metropolitan areas of Kozani, Kastoria, Florina and Grevena.