Prague - A special military flight with the remains of four Czech soldiers killed in a suicide attack in Afghanistan on Tuesday landed shortly before 13:30 CEST at the Prague-Kbely airport where also President Milos Zeman and other leading politicians were present.
Vojenský speciál přepravil 10. července do Česka ostatky čtyř českých vojáků, kteří zahynuli v Afghánistánu při útoku sebevražedného atentátníka nedaleko základny Bagrám. Na snímku vojáci na letišti v Praze-Kbelích přenášejí z letadla rakev s ostatky jednoho ze zabitých kolegů. ČTK Krumphanzl Michal
A guard of honour took four coffins draped in a national flag out of the aircraft and placed them on black-covered catafalques on the airport surface to the tunes of music of mourning.
Present at the commemorative act were besides Zeman also Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka, Defence Minister Martin Stropnicky, Foreign Minister Lubomir Zaoralek and Chief of Staff Petr Pavel.
After the ceremony, the remains of the soldiers will be taken to the Central Military Hospital were an autopsy will be carried out in compliance with military rules.
The military has offered the soldiers´ families to stage a military funeral, but no decision has been made as yet.
The soldiers died in a suicide attack near the Bagram base in the east of Afghanistan.
Another Czech soldier suffered serious wounds and he has undergone four surgeries. His condition does not allow his transfer to the Czech Republic for the time being.
Zeman has announced he will award the four soldiers with Heroism Medals in memoriam on the October 28 national holiday.
Sirens were blaring and church bells were ringing across the country in tribute to the dead soldiers at noon today. Flags have been flown at half mast at many places in the country.
Nine Czech soldiers have died in Afghanistan since Czechs joined the ISAF mission there in 2001.