Sweden’s Crown Princess Victoria was overcome with emotion as she paid tribute to the 852 people lost in the Estonia ferry disaster, 25 years on from the sinking.
The heir apparent, 42, and her husband Prince Daniel, 46, attended a memorial at the Estonia monument at the Galley Shipyard Cemetery in Stockholm today.
Mother-of-two Princess Victoria used a tissue to dry her eyes during the service and was seen reaching to hold her husband’s hand.
Passenger ferry M/S Estonia sunk in 1994 while sailing from Tallinn to Stockholm and is one of Europe’s worst peacetime maritime disasters.
Crown Princess Victoria, pictured, used a tissue to wipe away tears during a memorial service to mark 25 years since the M/S Estonia sank today
The heir apparent to the Swedish throne reached for her husband Prince Daniel’s hand during the emotional ceremony in Stockholm
Crown Princess Victoria, also known as the Duchess of Västergötland, wore a long navy coat for the emotional event today.
She paired the statement jacket with black trousers, a white shirt and a pair of black boots.
The Swedish royal tied her hair back into a bun for the memorial service and wore a simple pair of pearl earrings.
Prince Daniel, who married Victoria at Stockholm Cathedral in 2010, also wore a long coat which he paired with a crisp white shirt and grey tie.
Although the majority of victims on the M/S Estonia were Swedes and Estonians, ten Finnish passengers also lost their lives, reports News Now Finland.
On the night of the disaster the ferry’s cargo had been badly distributed and strong waves tore open part of the bow door. There was 137 survivors.
The M/S Estonia, pictured before the disaster, sunk in 1994 while sailing from Tallinn, Estonia, to Stockholm, Sweden, killing 852 people. There were 137 survivors
The wreck of the ferry still lies in the Baltic Sea, with the site considered a graveyard. Pictured is another boat lifting the bow door of the M/S Estonia in November 1994
During the rescue mission, authorities used helicopters to rescue 44 people from the sea on the night and dropped them on other ferries instead of flying back to land.
Along with the 1912 sinking of the Titanic, the M/S Estonia wreck is among the worst peacetime disasters involving a European ship.
During the memorial service today survivor Kent Harstedt called for an independent investigation into the accident, reports the DW.
He said: ‘The time for justice has come. There has not been any international, independent inquiry, no one has had to assume their responsibilities.’
Earlier this week Finnish police said they are investigating whether a German ship sent down a diving robot to where the wreck of the M/S Estonia is.
During the 25th anniversary memorial service mother-of-two Princess Victoria, pictured with her husband, wiped tears away from her face
Crown Princess Victoria laid a wreath at the memorial event at the Estonia monument at the Galley Shipyard Cemetery in Stockholm today
Both Victoria and Daniel, together left, wore long coats for the engagement in Stockholm today with the Crown Princess, right, opting to wear black trousers under her navy jacket
The Swedish royal pinned her hair back into a bun and wore a simple pair of pearl earrings for the service. Victoria is pictured with her husband Prince Daniel at the ceremony
The M/S Estonia wreck is among the worst peacetime disasters involving a European ship, along with the sinking of the Titanic. Pictured is Crown Princess Victoria at the service today
They said the incident could be a violation of a law protecting the car ferry. Most victims remain entombed on the ship, which rests on the seabed some 80 meters (264 feet) below the surface.
The wreck is considered a graveyard, which gives the area protection under the law.
Finnish coast guards sent a report Monday to the Finland’s National Bureau of Investigation about the incident in international waters but which is within Finland’s economic area.
Finnish authorities, who are investigating the incident with their counterparts in Germany, did not name the German vessel.
However, the Baltic News Service, the region’s main news agency, said a Finnish coast guard ship approached the Fritz Reuter on Monday afternoon and that a robot was thought to have been used to illegally explore the wreck.