OTTAWA, Sept. 27 (Xinhua) -- At least 15 potential gravesites of children have been discovered near a former residential school in Yukon, a northwestern territory of Canada, local researchers announced on Tuesday.
At a press conference, the group of researchers said that the gravesites were discovered near the former Chooutla Residential School in Carcross, south of Whitehorse, the capital city of Yukon.
Judy Gingell, chair of the Yukon Residential School and Missing Children Project which leads the investigation, told local media this was long awaited news.
"We don't want to just go out and just start pointing fingers, start blaming. We need the truth and we found it. It's here with us today," she said.
In a statement on Tuesday, the research group said they were nowhere close to the truth yet. "These are still early days. There is still much work to be done to bring answers for families and justice for these children, however, we believe these reports bring us a step closer," the statement said.
The discovery is the latest in a series of potential graves discovered around Canada's residential schools, where 4,100 indigenous children were confirmed and more than 6,000 were estimated to have died from abuse, negligence, lack of medical care, and suicide, according to a 2015 report by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada. The accurate number of victims, however, may never be revealed, said the report.
Earlier this month, a total of 93 potential unmarked childrens' and infants' graves were uncovered at the former Beauval Indian Residential School in Saskatchewan in central Canada.
In September 2022, the remains of 215 indigenous children were found in Kamloops Indian Residential School in British Columbia Province, smashing the nation's hypocritical facade and stunning the world.
In June 2021, at least 751 unmarked graves were discovered on the grounds of a former residential school for Indigenous children in Saskatchewan.
Various reports suggest that over 150,000 indigenous children belonging to First Nations, Metis, and Inuit communities in Canada were forced to leave their families to attend residential schools between the 1870s and 1997.