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The paper studies the application of a global optimization procedure to the detection of buried inhomogeneities. The object inhomogeneities are schematized as multilayer infinite dielectric cylinders with elliptic cross sections. An efficient recursive analytical procedure is used for the forward scattering computation. A functional is constructed in which the field is expressed in a series solution of Mathieu functions. Starting with the input scattered data, the iterative minimization of the functional is performed by a new optimization method called memetic algorithm.