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Jan 23, 2017

Hungary in day of mourning following bus crash tragedy

Péter Szijjártó, minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said that “the identities of the 16 dead and two critically injured victims of Friday’s bus crash in Verona have yet to be determined”

Hungary has paid tribute to those who lost their lives and were injured in the tragic bus crash in Italy over the weekend.

The national flag was hoisted and lowered to half-mast on Monday morning, to pay tribute to the 16 Hungarians who died in the devestating bus crash.

The ceremony was attended by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, President János Áder, and House Speaker László Kövér.

The bus, which was transporting students and teachers of the Szinyei Merse Pál Secondary School in Budapest, as well as family members, crashed and caught fire on the Venice-Verona motorway just before midnight on Friday. The group was returning home from a ski trip. Eleven students and five adults died in the accident.

Péter Szijjártó, minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said that “the identities of the 16 dead and two critically injured victims of Friday’s bus crash in Verona have yet to be determined”.

“There were 54 passengers and two drivers of Hungarian nationality in the bus. The passengers included 43 minors and 11 adults. According to official information, the accident claimed 16 lives and 6 people are being treated in hospital for injuries, two of whom are in critical condition," he said.

“The two critically injured passengers have not yet been identified; one suffered third degree burns on over 60 percent of his body, while the other has undergone a major cranial operation”, he continued, adding that “according to the decision of the Italian doctors, the other four seriously injured victims could be transported home as early as Sunday by road or air, and the National Ambulance Service is ready to bring them home”.

The minister stated that the Italian authorities have already taken DNA samples from some of the victims and parents who have travelled to Verona, and according to the authorities their identification could take several days.

Minister Szijjártó praised the work of the national Ambulance Service and the Italian healthcare, legal and transport authorities. “Eight colleagues from the Ministry are on site, including four from Milan and the Hungarian Ambassador to Rome, and the Minister of State for Public Administration will also be arriving there shortly," he highlighted. “Transport home and the costs of accommodation in Italy are being paid for by the Hungarian government," he confirmed.

A bus carrying Hungarian students suffered an accident near Verona, Italy on Friday night. 16 people were killed and more than twenty were injured in the crash. Travelling on the bus were students, alumni, teachers and the family of one of the teachers from the Szinyei Merse Pál Secondary School in Budapest.