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Three hurt in Italian church candle explosion

An electric candle exploded in the hands of a 6-year-old girl during Mass on Sunday, seriously injuring her and renewing fears that a serial bomber who has terrorised northeastern Italy for more than 10 years has struck again.

Two others in the Cathedral in the town of Motta di Livenza (pictured) were slightly injured. Venice Prosecutor Luca Marini, who has investigated previous bombings, said an explosive device was hidden in the candle, according to the Italian news agency in Treviso.

Mayor Graziano Panighel said the suspect likely has targeted the town before. In 2001, explosives were reportedly hidden in an electric candle at a town cemetery, seriously injuring a 63-year-old woman.

"I think he wants to cause the most pain and suffering possible to the community and its families," the mayor told Sky TG24 television.

Surgeons reconstructed the thumb, index finger and middle finger of the girl's left hand, doctors told reporters at Pordenone hospital.

The child had inserted a coin to activate the electric votive candle when it exploded.

Candle Explodes in Italian Church; 3 Hurt (The Guardian/Associated Press 14/3/05)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Diocese of Treviso
Motta di Livenza

The more we talk about unabomber the more he attacks (AGI 14/3/05)
Church bomob suspect may be serial attacker (International Herald Tribune 14/3/05)

15 Mar 2005