Genoa marks first anniversary of Morandi-bridge disaster

Names of 43 victims read out, city observes minute's silence

(ANSA) - Genoa, August 14 - President Sergio Mattarella, Premier Giuseppe Conte and Deputy Premiers Luigi Di Maio and Matteo Salvini were among the officials present as Genoa marked the first anniversary of the Morandi-bridge collapse.
    The ceremony started with the names of the 43 victims being read out before the archbishop of Genoa, Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, presided over a Mass in the area of the disaster.
    "They were sentenced to death," said Egle Possetti, the president of the committee of the families of the victims. Genoa churches rang their bells and the ships in the port sounded their sirens while the rest of the city observed a minute of silence at 11:36, the time when the bridge collapsed a year ago.
    Mattarella embraced many of the relatives of the victims before and after Wednesday's ceremony. Conte said that "today Genoa is a symbol of the desire to be born again". Some victims' families did not take part, having described the ceremony as a parade for politicians. A delegation from highways company Autostrade per l'Italia and its parent group, Atlantia, including Atlantia CEO Giovanni Castellucci, left the ceremony after the relatives of the victims complained about them being there. A representative for the committee of the families of victims on Tuesday called for the implementation of pledge made by members of the government for the revocation of Autostrade per l'Italia's concessions. The highways company is accused of not carrying out the checks and maintenance work that could have prevented the disaster.
    Demolition of the remainder of the Morandi Bridge was completed Monday ahead of the construction of a new bridge designed by starchitect Renzo Piano, a Genoa native. The project is expected to be ready next year.
    Genoa Mayor Marco Bucci, who is also the commissioner for the new viaduct, said work on the project was not being halted even on the anniversary.


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