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Hong Kong mourns boat tragedy

Hong Kong is grieving for the victims of the boat crash disaster that occurred in the city Monday. Citizens have been observing three-minute silences and the international community has offered its condolences.

Hong Kong residents on Thursday grieved over the tragic deaths of 38 people earlier in the week in the city's biggest maritime accident in decades.

Residents were clad in black, flags were hoisted at half mast and leaders held a three-minute silence in honor of the victims.

Leung Chun-ying, the chief executive of the Executive Council of Hong Kong, led senior officials in a service of memorial, which was taking place at government headquarters.

US Consul General Stephen Young expressed his "deepest condolences" in a statement. The European Union foreign policy head Catherine Ashton also commented on the tragedy, saying it was "a serious blow to a city for which the sea is its soul."

Hong Kong's worst maritime incident in 40 years sent shockwaves through the country on Monday. A high-speed ferry crashed into the pleasure craft, Lamma IV, which was transporting around 120 employees on a company trip.

The exact cause of the disaster is not yet known.

sej/tj (AP, AFP)