By Baris Seckin
ROME (AA) - Italy on Friday held state funeral for David Sassoli, president of the European Parliament, who died on early Tuesday at the age of 65.
Italian President Sergio Mattarella, Prime Minister Mario Draghi, European Council President Charles Michel and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen joined the family and friends of David Sassoli at the state funeral in Rome.
The state ceremony was held at the Church of Santa Maria degli Angeli in Rome, with Sassoli's coffin draped in the EU flag.
Sassoli's wife, Alessandra Vittorini, said it will be difficult to get used to the absence of her husband while Sassoli's children said that their father gave them honor, passion and love as the greatest teaching.
The Florence-born journalist-turned-politician was hospitalized on Dec. 26 in Italy, his office said on Monday, because of “a serious complication due to a dysfunction of the immune system."
In September, Sassoli was admitted to a hospital with pneumonia and was unable to chair the plenary sessions and attend high-level meetings.