Estonia — Estonian officials said Saturday that they had begun exhuming a grave thought to hold the remains of Soviet soldiers killed by the Nazis, a day after the removal of a memorial on the site provoked widespread rioting by ethnic Russians.
About 15 people are buried at the small park adjacent to where the Bronze Soldier monument stood. The exact number of bodies and their identity is not known.
Lutheran and Russian Orthodox ceremonies were conducted before the excavations started. The site was covered by a white tent and surrounded by police officers, who kept the press and public far from the area.
Some 50,000 Soviet soldiers are estimated to have died on Estonian territory while fighting Nazi German troops in World War II.