Costa Rica News – Ariana Fernandez is a Costa Rican we can all be proud of. She is an amazing anthropologist, having been made famous in 2006 for pointing out a detail in the clothes of a Kurdish boy that showed the entry of the projectile in a massacre of the Kurds by Saddam Hussein.
She worked on 500 human remains from that massacre. She also worked on a similar project in Kosovo. She lived on military bases, like the US base in Baghdad, going from place to place- Croatia, Bosnia, and Spain- exhuming graves and getting clues that could lead to closure for families whose loved ones were placed in mass graves.
She’s seen death from many cultural perspectives. The Spanish, for example, want to know where their loved ones are buried, but amnesty prevents it. Those in Thailand and Cambodia prefer to leave their lost loved ones alone, preferring not to disturb the dead.
Fernandez’ experience in these places of mass deaths is incredible. She, along with her sister Eleanor and her teacher Roxana Ferllini have found secrets from the remains of these cruel killings and natural disasters. They have contributed to forensic science and helped grieving families.
Ferllini was Costa Rica’s very first forensic anthropologist, when the field was just developed, in the mid-eighties. She worked with the OIJ, taught at UCR, and testified in international courts.
She’s about to write a book about geopolitics and genocide. That’s one we should all put on our list to read.