Authorities have discovered a mass grave in southern Vietnam believed to contain remains of communist fighters killed by French colonial occupiers during a failed prison escape, an official said Monday.
A woman uncovered 17 sets of remains last Tuesday as she dug a foundation for her house on the former site of a French prison in Luong Hoa Lac village, Tien Giang province, said Vo Van Hung, the village chief.
The remains were likely those of communist fighters killed by the French during a failed escape from the prison in early 1949, Hung said. The site of the grave and the number of remains both match the well-known story of the escape attempt.
Three communist fighters managed to escape, but 17 more were killed and buried in a mass grave, Hung said. The bodies of two others were thrown into a river.
It took authorities three days to recover the remains, he said. The recovered remains will be buried on Wednesday, but it was not yet clear if the remains would be reburied at the site or at a cemetery.
French colonialists occupied Vietnam for nearly 100 years until they were forced to leave after the communist victory at Dien Bien Phu in 1954. (AP)
Mass grave discovered in Vietnam