AMATRICE, Italy – Rescuers believe they have found more bodies buried deep in the rubble of the ruined town of Amatrice, five days after a devastating earthquake struck central Italy, killing at least 290 people.
Residents of the hill town estimated that up to 10 people were still missing and emergency services said they had located three corpses in Amatrice’s Hotel Roma, which, like much of the historic center, was wrecked by Wednesday’s quake.
Deputy Mayor Gianluca Carloni said his uncle’s body had still not been recovered from the hotel, which was particularly busy at this time of year because of a food festival.
“It is absolutely vital to finish as soon as possible this initial (search) phase to make sure that there are no more bodies under the rubble,” he said.
Museums across Italy donated proceeds from their ticket sales on Sunday to help the rebuilding effort, while top flight soccer teams held a minute’s silence before their weekend matches out of respect for the victims.
Pope Francis led prayers for the dead in his weekly address in St. Peter’s Square in Rome, saying he wanted to go to the earthquake zone to bring comfort to the survivors. (Reuters)