18 Apr 2010

Emotional memorial for Polish plane crash victims

6:32 am on 18 April 2010

The people of Poland have paid an emotional tribute to their President Lech Kaczynski, his wife and 94 others who were killed in a plane crash in Russia a week ago.

Up to 100,000 mourners packed into the vast Pilsudski Square in central Warsaw to commemorate the victims of the country's most devastating accident.

Senior political and military figures, including the heads of the armed forces, were among the dead.

The three-hour long service included poems, music and speeches in honour of the dead, as well as a Mass celebrated by Polish bishops.

Before the ceremony, church bells were rung and sirens wailed to mark the exact moment of the crash.

Mr Kaczynski and his wife are due to be given a state funeral in the city of Krakow later on Sunday.