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Italy holds state funeral for victims of earthquake

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Italy holds state funeral for victims of earthquake

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Mourners gathered in the Italian town of Ascoli Piceno on Saturday for a state funeral for some of the victims of Wednesday’s (August 24)powerful earthquake.

Italy declared Saturday a day of mourning to honour the victims.

Among those grieving were Italian President Sergio Mattarella, Prime Minister Matteo Renzy and other political leaders.

Flags across Italy flew at half-mast as the death toll hit 290.

Mattarella flew to Amatrice by helicopter on Saturday to see the damage first hand before travelling on later in the morning to the nearby city of Ascoli Piceno for the funeral of up to 40 of the victims.

More than 1,000 aftershocks continued to rattle the area bringing fresh damage.

Although rescuers continued to search mounds of rubble, there was little hope of finding survivors.

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