Information has surfaced that bones of 187 human bodies were discovered in the preparation phase before construction began on the National Stadium which will be used in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Construction on the stadium is scheduled to end in December 2019.
According to a report from TV Asahi TV, the 187 bodies, which comprised both men and women and ranged from infancy to advanced ages, were discovered between 2013 and 2015 during the preparation phase of the stadium's construction. The bodies are believed to have been buried in the graveyard of a Buddhist temple which previously existed at the construction site from 1732 to 1919.
According to Kenichi Shinoda, Anthropology Research Director at the National Museum of Nature and Science: "Over the last ten years or so, with big development projects and the Olympics, human bones have been unearthed at a rapidly growing rate, and we haven't been able to keep up."
This year alone, bones of nearly 1,000 human bodies were discovered at another construction site.
Experts say that such human remains are invaluable for research since they can provide insight into Edo period lifestyles. The Ministry of Culture plans to include the construction of a storage facility for human remains in next year's budget appropriation request.
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