North Korea handed over only one dog tag with 55 boxes of US remains: report

North Korea handed over only one dog tag with 55 boxes of US remains: report
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Only one military dog tag allegedly was provided to U.S. officials last week when North Korea handed over 55 boxes of what it said were the remains of American soldiers killed in the Korean War, The Associated Press reported Tuesday.

A U.S. defense official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, told the AP that it could take months or years to identify the remains. The official could not say what name was on the dog tag or whether it even belonged to an American.

The remains were handed over last week in the coastal city of Wonsan, North Korea, before they were flown back to an air base in South Korea. 

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The handoff was the result of a deal reached last month during a summit between President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump rallies in Nevada amid Supreme Court flurry: 'We're gonna get Brett' Trump: 'Good news' that Obama is campaigning again Trump boosts Heller, hammers 'Wacky Jacky' opponent in Nevada MORE and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore. 

While the fighting in the Korean War lasted from 1950 until 1953, the war never formally ended and a peace treaty was never signed. There were estimated 5,300 Americans who did not return home from the conflict.

A repatriation ceremony for the remains is set for Wednesday. After that, they will be taken to Hawaii, where they will begin undergoing forensic analysis to try to identify whom they belong to.

A 1994 RAND Corporation report notes that, even when dog tags have been provided in the past, the remains have not always been able to be identified as those of U.S. troops, Reuters reported

Pyongyang has said it has the remains of about 200 people believed to be U.S. troops who died in the Korean War.