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Finding of more remains stirs WTC anguish

NEW YORK -- Police and forensic experts dug through rubble at the World Trade Center site yesterday in search of more human remains after bones were discovered as utility crews excavated a manhole there this week.

The discovery Thursday angered families of Sept. 11 victims. Some called for all work at the site to be halted for a systematic search and for Congress and the state to investigate.

"These are the bones that these mothers bore," Rosaleen Tallon, whose brother was among the dead in the World Trade Center tragedy, said at a news conference.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg yesterday gathered top city officials for an emergency meeting at City Hall to determine why human bones were still being found at the site five years after the terrorist attack and what areas of the site should be searched again.

Chief Medical Examiner Charles Hirsch said he was eager to find out what would be decided as he walked in.

"We've been in touch with the families and expressed our concern," he said.

Construction work on several projects at the site -- the Sept. 11 memorial, the 1,776-foot Freedom Tower and a transit hub -- continued without interruption yesterday, said Port Authority of New York and New Jersey spokesman Steve Coleman.

The remains, some as big as arm or leg bones, were found by a Port Authority contractor working with a Consolidated Edison crew excavating a manhole, Coleman said. The location is next to where a podium is put up on Sept. 11 anniversaries for families to read the names of their loved ones.

The World Trade Center attack killed 2,749 people. The families of about 1,150 of those victims still have not received word their loved ones' remains had been found.

The group WTC Families for Proper Burial called for ground zero construction to be halted until a proper search for remains can be completed. Family members also urged an investigation by Congress and state Attorney General Eliot Spitzer into the failure to completely remove all remains.

Diane Horning, who lost a son on Sept. 11, 2001 , told reporters a small piece of her son's body, found 4 1/2 years ago, was located near the latest discovery.

"Why were these remains removed and the site compromised? The entire recovery has never been handled as a crime scene," she said.

The families said officials rushed to clean the debris from ground zero without properly considering the remains.

The excavation of the 110-story twin towers began the evening of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and lasted for nine months.

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