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News & Stories
News | Aug. 18, 2017

Field Operations Summary (August 2017)

Overview: As of July 31, 2017, there were 140 personnel deployed in support of operations around the world.

Please note that the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy or the Secretary of Defense will announce when a selection is made for the new Director.

The Agency is preparing to host the Annual Korean/Cold War annual meeting August 10-11 and we look forward to updating the families on the Agency’s progress and key initiatives that will enable us to better account for our nation’s missing and communicate with their family members. The majority of our identifications last year came from the unilateral turnover from North Korean known as K-208. Korean War cases have the priority for disinterment operations. As disinterment packets are approved and permits are granted, these cases become the priority for our bi-weekly disinterment operations in the Punchbowl Cemetery in Hawaii.

Vietnam War recovery missions will continue to be the Agency’s main operational focus for the remainder of FY17. FY 18-19 Operations Plan (OPLAN) was approved in June 2017. Our priority for field operations in FY18 continues to be Vietnam War losses. The Deputy Director will attend technical consultative talks in Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos this month.

Asia-Pacific Region: The Joint Field Activity (JFA) to Vietnam scheduled for 4th Quarter will not be reduced and is back to a standard size JFA. Preparations are also ongoing for the upcoming Consultations in Southeast Asia in August.

• Operations in Last 30 Days:
o Philippines, (via University of Illinois, Chicago, DPAA partner)
o Tarawa, (via History Flight Group, DPAA partner)
o Tarawa, Field Forensic Review
o Solomon Islands, 1xIT
o China, 1xIT
o Laos, 1xIT

• Upcoming Operations:
o Tarawa, Field Forensic Review
o Vietnam, 2xIT/4xRT, 2xVietnamese Recovery Teams (RT)/1x Vietnamese Underwater Recovery Team (URT)
o Japan, 1xIT
o Papua New Guinea, 1xRIT

• Pending Disinterment Operations
o Punchbowl (Hawaii): 16 scheduled per month

Europe-Mediterranean Region: The majority of field operations for the Europe-Mediterranean (Eur-Med) region begin in 4th Quarter. In the Eur-Med region DPAA has two organic recoveries in the field with four organic investigations occurring in this month and September. DPAA is also executing four partner investigations and recoveries with an additional two planned through this month in the Eur-Med region. This teaming approach has positively increased capacity while minimizing organic costs allowing us to accomplish a far greater number of missions this FY.

• Operations in Last 30 Days:
o Croatia, 1xURT (via Woods Hole, DPAA partner)
o Austria, 1xRT (via University of New Orleans, DPAA partner)
o Austria, 1xRT (via University of Maryland, DPAA partner)
o Italy, 1xIT (via Archaeological & Historical Conservancy, DPAA partner)
o Italy, 1xIT (via Coastal Research Vessel Leonardo, DPAA partner)
o Moldova (Transnistria)/Ukraine, 1xIT
o Bulgaria, 1xRT
o Slovenia, 1xIT

• Upcoming Operations:
o France, 1xRT (via University of Wisconsin, DPAA partner)
o Italy, 1xIT (via East Carolina University, DPAA partner)
o Germany, 1xIT/1xUIT
o France, 1xIT
o Austria, 1xIT

• U.S.-Russia Joint Commission on POW/MIAs (USRJC)
o Technical Talks will occur in Washington D.C. August 8-9.

• Pending Disinterment Operations
o Three (3) scheduled for American Battle Monuments Commission Cemeteries (1 each in Epinal, Henri-Chapelle, and Lorraine). Eight (8) disinterments are approved, with seven (7) from Ardennes tentatively scheduled for September.

Scientific Analysis: Lab operations are back up to full capacity with the new Medical Examiner on board. Going into 4th Quarter the lab staff will surge its operations in order to accomplish the Agency’s identification goals.


2017 FY Identifications to July 31, 2017:
o Total = 110 (93 new identifications and 17 identifications of additional remains for individuals previously accounted-for)
o WWII = 75 (64 new identifications; 11 identifications of additional remains for individuals previously accounted-for)
o Korean War = 22 (22 new identifications)
o Cold War = 0
o Vietnam War = 13 (7 new identifications; 6 identifications of additional remains for individuals previously accounted-for)

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Public Affairs Contact Information

Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency PAO
Washington, D.C.
2300 Defense Pentagon
Attn: Outreach and Communications
Washington, D.C. 20301-2300