David-Maria Sassoli, President of the European Parliament and one of the most influential personalities in the recent history of the European Union, died on January 11 at the age of 65.
A convinced democrat, this Florentine journalist represented, in the words of his Italian colleagues and the vast majority of MEPs, the spirit of the new political line, both internal and external, of the European Union. His sudden death, due to a chronic illness complicated by pneumonia, has caused a great shock in all the countries of the Eurozone.
This has forced an express change in the agendas of MEPs, senior representatives of the European Union, heads of state, ministers and prime ministers, who have not only paid their condolences officially and through other channels, but have also traveled to Rome (Italy) to bid farewell to the former President of the European Parliament at his funeral.
Although most of the governmental and institutional trips are planned at the beginning of the year, during the course of the year there are usually changes or unforeseen situations that lead to new trips. One of these situations is precisely that of State funerals, or funerals of institutional leaders, as in the case of David Sassoli.
The Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli e dei Martiri in Rome was visited by a large number of MEPs, as well as the President of the European Commission, the President of the European Council, the President of Italy, the Prime Minister of Italy, the Prime Minister of France and the President of the Spanish Government, among many others.
As usual, as we have already mentioned, this type of events usually acquire a markedly solemn character, full of protocol. Even before the funeral, a mortuary chapel, open to the public, was set up at the Capitol in Rome. In addition to the protocol, due to the status, rank and role of a large part of those attending the funeral, it is also common to deploy a significant amount of security, both active and passive.