TALLINN - The bodies of ten men have been found in a mass grave in southern Estonia, local media reported on Friday, and officials believe they were members of the anti-Soviet resistance group known as the 'Forest Brothers'.
Estonian Public Broadcasting (ERR) reported that the mass grave was found along a road near Voru, a town and municipality in southeastern Estonia. All the victims died of gunshot wounds or blunt-force trauma, according to a preliminary investigation.
Officials believe the mass grave dates back to the post-World War II period and that the victims were part of the Forest Brothers, who waged a guerrilla war against Soviet rule during the Soviet invasion and occupation of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.
ERR reported that the forest in which they were found was one of the last big resistance battles in 1953, and the Soviet secret police organization NKVD had ordered to bury resistance fighters in secret graves. "These factors make it a relatively high certainty that this is a secret burial ground in the forest," military historian Arnold Unt told the broadcaster.
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