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Tragedy Ignites Online Friendship Between Romanians and Montenegrins

In one of the most tragic road accidents ever seen in Montenegro, 18 Romanian nationals lost their lives and 29 were injured on June 23, 2013 when a Romanian bus full of tourists ran off the Grlo bridge 30 kilometers away from the Montenegrin capital of Podgorica into a 40-meter-deep ravine of the Morača canyon.

News of the accident soon spread, and due to the generosity of the Montenegro people toward the victims and their families, so did an outpouring of messages of gratitude, empathy, solidarity and adoration soon ensued on social networks from both countries.

One of the most shared images on social networks related to this tragic event; image courtesy of Lazarica.

One of the most shared images on social networks related to this tragic event. Image by Lazarica.

On Facebook, two pages soon appeared to thank Montenegro's citizens for their help and support. The pages, titled Montenegro, Respectful Thanks [ro], with more than 5,000 fans to date, and Thank You, Montenegro [ro] are overflowing with messages of thanks from Romanian citizens and images of Montenegrin citizens lending a helping hand in the aftermath of the tragic incident.

Twitter also saw an abundance of messages and interactions of true friendship and connection. Messages like Catalin Iote‘s (@Catalin_IoteR5) from Romania became a common and heartwarming site on Twitter:

@Catalin_IoteR5#Montenegro you're the best! We, #Romania are so happy because you are near by us.

Twitter user Eliza (@CronicileElizei) from Romania also expressed her gratitude:

@CronicileElizei: I just wanted to thank to our wonderful friends in #Montenegro that helped our people injured in a bus accident.#Romania is really grateful!

Evelina (@MissEveBaroiu) from Bucharest, like many others, wanted to show her respect and renewed faith in humanity in the region:

@MissEveBaroiu: Respect Montenegro! Thank you for showing us that,regardless of race, nationality and language,we all are human beings! #Montenegro #Romania

Social media users from across Montenegro reciprocated the feeling of friendship, such as user Klausbites from Podgorica who included one of the most shared images from Romania related to this event, shown below:

Romania, your welcome! #montenegro #romania

One of the most shared images on social networks and blogs from Romania.

One of the most shared images on social networks and blogs from Romania.

Diplomats and public officials of the two countries are also collaborating extensively in the wake of this unfortunate event that brought the two countries closer together, while the survivors, mostly pensioners from Romania on holiday in Montenegro, were first treated in hospital in Podgorica, then transferred to Romania by the Romanian government.

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