Italian police have arrested looters in the earthquake hit city of L’Aquila six days after the catastrophic tremor.
In the medieval city grief, terror and fears for the future are everywhere. Exhausted and traumatised residents have begun to return to their homes accompanied by the emergency services to collect personal belongings. At least 291 people are now reported dead and alarmingly, more than half the companies in the area have stopped producing and L’Aquila’s commercial zone resembles a ghost town. The number of people homeless is running at 40,000 with 24,000 living in tented villages. However tensions in the crowded camps are beginning to surface. This man claimed: “ The authorities gave precedence to disabled people when distributing the tents. But able bodied people just came along and took them.” The police have been informed. On Friday as many as 205 victims were buried in a moving mass funeral and the pope offered a special prayer for the survivors. However, not everyone is finding comfort in religion one survivor said “Now the prayer professionals are at it, saying masses, everybody is praying and Jesus sends the earthquake.”