Italy honors dead diplomat and bodyguard with a state funeral
The body of the Italian diplomat and his driver who died in DRC have been given a state burial. They were honored by the country and given full honors in a tearful burial ceremony.
Italian diplomat and driver buried in full honors
The Italian government has organized a state funeral for its ambassador and bodyguard who were killed in DRC. The duo was murdered in Congo during routine charity work. Luca Attanasio and Vittorio Lacovacci were gunned down after being ambushed and kidnapped using a United Nations food program.
They were billed to visit a school for a feeding project in the northern region of the country. Their caskets were covered with an Italian flag, and they were given a military salute. A military band played 'Honour to the fallen' was sung in a somber mood.
'' This excellent Italian citizen tried to help others even if it resulted in sacrificing their lives, their death is not in vain. Cardinal Angelo Donatis stated at their funeral.
He is Pope Francis vicar to the Rome diocese and said these deaths will prompt everyone to hear the sufferings of the Congolese people. An autopsy done in Italy has discovered they were shot twice in a kidnapping attempt, not murdered.
Congo government says rebel probably responsible for the death
The DRC government has said the ambassador convoy was blocked around the northern region by groups suspected to be rebels who have been at loggerheads with the government.
However, the rebel groups had insisted that they weren't responsible and that both the Rwandan and Congolese governments should be held responsible. This is because according to them the spot where they were killed was close to an army barrack. However, government sources said that rangers heard the noise and tried to shoot back to avoid the kidnap. There was a shoot-out that lasted briefly before the kidnappers shot the Italians and fled hurriedly.