Europe

Paris attacks: Funeral held in Venice for Italian victim

The coffin containing the body of Valeria Solesin is seen during the state funeral in St. Mark's Square in Venice Image copyright Reuters
Image caption The funeral was broadcast live on Italian television

A state funeral has been held in Venice for the sole Italian victim of the 13 November Paris attacks, 28-year-old student Valeria Solesin.

Her casket was borne up the city's Grand Canal in a black gondola to St Mark's Square.

Ms Solesin was among the 89 people killed at the Bataclan concert hall. She had been there with her boyfriend, who survived the attack.

Christian, Jewish and Muslim leaders spoke at the service.

"I want to thank the religious figures... who are here together in this square as a symbol of our common humanity at a moment when fanatics try to turn a massacre into an honourable act by invoking a faith," Ms Solesin's father, Alberto, said during the service, according to Reuters.

As well as her family, friends and boyfriend, Italian President Sergio Mattarella and Defence Minister Roberta Pinotti attended the service.

Large crowds of Venice residents and tourists turned out in St Mark's Square to watch the service.

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption The flags of the European Union, Italy and Venice flew over the square
Image copyright AFP
Image caption Ms Solesin had been studying at Paris's Sorbonne university
Image copyright AFP
Image caption Ms Solesin's parents Alberto and Luciana (first and second left), her brother Dario and boyfriend Andrea Ravagnani were overcome with emotion at the service
Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Ms Solesin's casket was carried to the square in a black gondola
Image copyright Reuters
Image caption At the end of the ceremony the casket was taken to the cemetery to the strains of Beethoven's "Ode to Joy"