Tunisia remembrance for 2015 beach massacre victims

Tunisia remembrance for 2015 beach massacre victims
Officials from around the world attended a ceremony to remember those killed in a bloody shooting spree that rocked a Tunisian beach resort last year.
2 min read
27 June, 2016

Tunisia held a minute's silence to mark one year since an Islamic State group attack on holidaymakers at a beach, which killed 38 tourists in the North African country.

Tourism Minister Selma Elloumi Rekik was joined by a British official – in respect of 30 Britons that were among the dead – to lay flowers in remembrance of those killed during the shooting in the town of Port El Kantaoui south of the capital.

Names of the victims were called out by a priest as security forces surrounded the area.

Diplomats from Germany, Portugal, Ireland, Belgium and Russia -- whose countries also lost victims in the attack -- attended the ceremony alongside hotel employees who helped save tourists on the day of the attack.

On June 26 last year, an Islamic State gunman armed with a Kalashnikov rifle opened fire on a Tunisian beach near hotels in the coastal resort city of Sousse, prompting hundreds of tourists to flee in horror.

In another IS incident, 21 tourists and a policeman were killed at the Bardo National Museum weeks earlier.

A suicide bombing in the capital last November - also claimed by the militant group - killed 12 members of the presidential guard.

The attacks triggered authorities to declare a state of emergency, which remains in place after it was extended for the fourth time on Monday, heavily affecting what was once a buzzing tourism industry in the country.

Prior to the attack at the coastal resort, the country's number of British visitors - who were also the majority nationality among the Sousse victims - was set to break records for the early months of 2015.

A year later, however, the number of British sun-seekers in the North African nation has crashed by 93.2 percent for the first five months of 2016.