An inter-religious funeral service is held in Malta for 24 victims of last weekend's migrant shipwreck. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
A a poignant inter-faith funeral service was held on Malta on Thursday (April 23) morning for 24 drowned migrants, the only victims whose bodies were recovered from the Mediterranean in last weekend's shipwreck. Their boat capsized in the Mediterranean overnight between Saturday and Sunday (April 18-19), in one of the worst disasters yet in the growing migrant crisis. Ahead of the service, soldiers carried the 24 plain wooden coffins past piles of flowers to a marquee set up near the morgue. Mourners were joined by authorities and dignitaries including European Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos, Italian Interior Minister Angelino Alfano, Maltese President Marie Louise Coleiro Preca, premier Joseph Muscat and several Maltese ministers. Bishop of Gozo Mario Grech and Imam Mohammed El Sadi conducted the service, giving readings from both the Bible and the Koran. "This event reminds us that we are all immigrants and our life is a journey of migration. Our grandparents Adam and Eve, peace be onto them, emigrated from heaven to earth. We emigrated from our mothers' wombs to this world and we will emigrate to the graves," Imam Mohammed El Sadi said. The death toll from the shipwreck off the coast of Libya was uncertain after officials said there had been at least 700 people on board, some reportedly locked in the hold. Only 28 survivors of the tragedy were found.