RELATIVES BURY URNS IN MEMORY OF MISSING ARMENIAN CRASH VICTIMS

Agence France Presse -- English
May 10, 2006 Wednesday

Relatives have begun symbolically burying urns with Black Sea water
and sand in memory of missing victims of an Armenian plane crash last
week whose bodies have not been recovered.

"It is very important for Armenians to have a burial place after
death," said a relative of Armenia's former interior minister Khusik
Arutiunian, one of the victims when the passenger aircraft plunged
into the Black Sea on May 3.

"We bury an urn with sand and thus have we have a place to reflect,
sorrow and light candles."

Further funeral masses were celebrated Wednesday in memory of all
113 passengers and crew who died when an Airbus A320 operated by the
Armenian airline Armavia plunged into the sea as it tried to land at
Sochi in bad weather on a flight from Yerevan.

Some 1,500 mourners lit candles at the Church of Saint Gregory at
Yerevan, capital of the Caucasian republic.

Of the 51 victims recovered, 47 had been identified, said the Russian
emergencies ministry.

French specialists were helping Armenian and Russian authorities in
their search for plane fragments and the flight recorder, known as
the black box.