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Pierre Korkie laid to rest

Pierre Korkie was buried today in Bloemfontein after being killed by al-Qaeda militants in Yemen last week.

School learners carrying Pierre Korkie's coffin ahead of his memorial in Bloemfontein on 12 December 2014. Picture: Vumani Mkhize/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - South African school teacher Pierre Korkie has now been laid to rest in Bloemfontein after being killed by al-Qaeda militants.

The Free State government says innovative solutions to extremism need to be found to prevent similar deaths in future.

He died in a botched operation by US Special Forces after being held captive by al-Qaeda for more than 18 months.

Korkie and his wife, Yolande were kidnapped in Yemen last year May, however, Yolande was released in January this year.

Tributes were paid to Korkie at his memorial and among them was a message from one of his pupils in Yemen.

Grey pupil Geoffery Seale read out the message during the service.

"There's a message that we received from a student in Yemen that says everybody has potential but sometimes the will to try dies but there are people like Mr Pierre who knows how to light the candle again."

Meanwhile, the Free State government's director general Kopung Ralikontsane says a new approach to fighting terrorism may be needed.

"We condemn the acts of extremists and the South African government and governments around the world will continue to fight to root out these criminal acts around the world."

Korkie was buried in a cemetery in the city with only close friends and family in attendance.

At the same time, a memorial service took place in Pretoria for three members of the Groenewald family who were killed by the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Video: Pierre Korkie's final journey.

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