Iranian farmers uncover remains of Iraqi soldiers killed in 1980s war

These screengrabs were taken from a video showing the discovery of the remains of three Iraqi soldiers in a field near the town of Ahwaz, Iran, on January 11.
These screengrabs were taken from a video showing the discovery of the remains of three Iraqi soldiers in a field near the town of Ahwaz, Iran, on January 11. © Twitter / @RAFEEF_alhafedh

An Iranian family was digging up soil to plant lemon trees when they made a shocking discovery – the remains of three Iraqi soldiers from the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq war. The soldiers were still wearing their dog tags, and a number of journalists have been posting on social media in an attempt to locate their family members. 

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The discovery was made by a family who owns a farm outside the village of Dar Chiaa, near the town of Ahvaz in southwestern Iran. One video, posted on Twitter on January 12 by Rafeef al-Hafedh, a journalist who works with Iraqi TV channel INews, shows bones, including two skulls. 

“Today, we were going to plant lemon trees on our land in the region of Dar Chiaa and we found the remains of two martyrs, so far,” says the farmer filming the video. 

"An Iranian brother from the town of Ahwaz sent me this video [...]. They were tilling their fields. Share widely so that the information reaches their families,” wrote this journalist in her Tweet.

In the end, the remains of three soldiers were uncovered. Their names and blood types were written on their dog tags, which you can see in the photos shared by Rafeef al-Hafedh.

Dog tags were found along with the remains of three Iraqi soldiers. The names on the tags are Aziz Hussein Ahmed, Amer Rahdeef Jabar and Khaled Ahmed Chaoukat. These photos were posted on Twitter.
Dog tags were found along with the remains of three Iraqi soldiers. The names on the tags are Aziz Hussein Ahmed, Amer Rahdeef Jabar and Khaled Ahmed Chaoukat. These photos were posted on Twitter. © Twitter / @RAFEEF_alhafedh

These last few years, there have been several exchanges of soldiers’ remains between Iran and Iraq, under the supervision of the International Red Cross. In January 2021, Iraq returned the remains of 57 Iranian soldiers to their homeland in exchange for the remains of four Iraqi soldiers

However, the whereabouts of tens of thousands of soldiers who went missing during the Iran-Iraq war is still unknown, according to the International Red Cross.