Thousands of people have gathered in a central square in Prague to honor the memory of three Czech hockey players who died in a plane crash this week.
A Russian plane carrying one of Russia’s top ice-hockey teams, Lokomotiv Yaroslavl, crashed on September 7, killing at least 43 players, coaches, and air crew.
The victims included Karel Rachunek, Jan Marek, and Josef Vasicek, who helped the Czech national team win the gold medal at the world championships in 2005 and 2010.
Major Czech hockey stars and officials attended the memorial ceremony, which was organized by the Czech hockey federation, at Old Town Square.
After the ceremony, Mass was held for the three players in a nearby church.
Earlier, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev ordered his government to shut down unreliable airlines after the chartered plane crash that wiped out the Lokomotiv hockey team.
A Kremlin spokeswoman said Medvedev instructed his government to draft measures by November 15 that would let the authorities “discontinue the operations of air carriers incapable of ensuring flight safety.”
compiled from agency reports