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Italy’s Foreign Minister Wants Answers Over Slain Ambassador

Italian diplomat's body arrives in Rome.   -  
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Justin Kabumba/Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.


Welcomed Back to Italy

The body of the Italian ambassador Luca Attanasioand who died at 43 years old from gunshot wounds - along with bodyguard Vittorio Iacovacci and a WFP Congolese driver, Moustapha Milambo, arrived Tuesday evening in Rome.

The arrival of the deceased in his home country a day after the attack attributed by Kinshasa to Rwandan Hutu rebels — who deny any involvement.

The ambassador had been en route when the World Food Programme (WFP) convoy in which he was travelling was ambushed in the eastern province of North Kivu, the Democratic Republic of Congo — near the border with Rwanda.

A military plane, a Boeing 767, left the airport of Goma, the capital of North Kivu, landed shortly after 23:00 (22:00 GMT) at Ciampino airport, near the Italian capital, with the bodies of the diplomat and his escort in Italian flag-draped coffins, according to the public television Rai and the news agency Ansa.

Official Call For an Investigation

Italy's foreign minister Luigi Di Maio is called for answers on Wednesday.

"We have formally asked WFP (World Food Programme) and the United Nations to open an investigation to clarify what happened, the reasons behind the security arrangements used and who was responsible for these decisions."

He added that he awaited "clear and exhaustive answers."

The military plane which carried the bodies of the diplomat and his escort in Italian-flag draped coffins was welcomed at Ciampino airport — along with the ambassador's surviving wife and their three daughters ho were on board, by the Prime Minister Mario Draghi, the Defence Minister Lorenzo Guerini and the Head of Diplomacy.

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