Entries in Funeral (11)


Hugo Chavez's Body to Remain on Public Display After Funeral

JUAN BARRETO/AFP/Getty Images(CARACAS, Venezuela) -- As world leaders, mainly from Latin America and the Caribbean, are gathering in Caracas ahead of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez's funeral Friday, large crowds of mourners coming to pay their respects have assembled in the capital city where he is lying in state.  On Thursday, Vice President Nicolas Maduro said Chavez, who died Tuesday after battling cancer, will remain on display permanently.

Now the country's acting president, Nicolas Maduro said the deceased president will be embalmed and permanently displayed "like Lenin" after Friday's funeral, referring to Soviet Premier Vladimir Lenin, whose embalmed body has been on public display in Moscow since his death in 1924. Maduro added that after lying in state for at least another seven days, Chavez's body will go on display in a glass casket at the Museum of the Revolution so that "his people will always have him."

According to BBC News, more than 2 million mourners, many of them waiting for hours, have already come to view Chavez's body.

Friday's state funeral, attended by heads of government, is expected to begin around 9 a.m. ET.  

The United States is sending a delegation to the funeral, but no senior officials from the administration will be in attendance. The State Department has confirmed that the U.S. delegation to the funeral will include former U.S. Reps. William Delahunt, D-Mass., and Gregory Meeks, D-N.Y., as well as U.S. Embassy Caracas Chargé d'Affaires James Derham.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Prince William Attends Funeral of Childhood Nanny

Tim Graham/Getty Images(LONDON) -- Prince William put professional obligations aside for the day to say goodbye to a woman who was by his side throughout his childhood.

William, the second-in-line to the British throne, attended the funeral of Olga Powell, a nanny to the royal family for 15 years, who died last month at the age of 82.

Powell first entered Prince William's life when the young prince was just six months old, according to ITV. She continued to watch William and, soon, his younger brother, Prince Harry, throughout their formative years and saw them through the divorce of their parents, Prince Charles and Princess Diana, and the death of Princess Diana just years later, in 1997.

William, 30, cancelled engagements with his wife, Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, to attend the private service, held in Harlow, Essex, U.K. He was seen in photographs wearing a dark suit and surrounded by his extended family on his mother's side, including Diana's sisters, Lady Jane Fellowes and Lady Sarah McCorquodale.

Prince Harry, 27, did not attend the service because he is currently serving a four-month deployment in Afghanistan with the British Army.

Powell, who was frequently seen in photographs shepherding the young princes, reportedly kept in touch after she ended her service to the royals when William was around 15, attending William's 21st birthday party at Windsor Castle and his wedding to Middleton in April 2011. She also attended Prince Harry's confirmation at Eton College in 2000, according to the U.K.'s Daily Mail.

The Daily Mail also reported that Powell's family requested that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made in her honor to Prince Harry's own charity, Sentebale, which he created to provide support for children and orphans in Lesotho, Africa.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Suicide Attacker Targets Funeral in Eastern Afghanistan

ABC News(JALALABAD, Afghanistan) -- As many as 25 civilians were killed when a suicide attacker blew himself up at a funeral Tuesday in eastern Afghanistan, a local government spokesman said.

The French news agency AFP reports that the suicide bomber was targeting the district governor, who was one of at least 36 people injured in the attack.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Only Man Convicted in Lockerbie Bombing, Buried in Libya

MAHMUD TURKIA/AFP/GettyImages(TRIPOLI, Libya) -- The only man convicted of the Lockerbie bombing was buried Monday in Tripoli.  Just under a hundred family members and friends attended the funeral of Abdelbaset al Megrahi, who was buried at Zarwani cemetery, Tripoli's main burial grounds on the outskirts of the Libyan capital.

Many thought al Megrahi, 60, wouldn't last this long.  Terminally ill with cancer, he was released on "compassionate grounds" in Scotland 2 1/2 years ago.  Al Megrahi was the only person convicted in 2001 for the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103, in which 270 (189 American) people were killed over Lockerbie, Scotland.  He served his sentence in Scotland until his release.

Until he died Sunday, Al Megrahi -- an ex-intelligence official -- always claimed innocence and said he had nothing to do with the deadly terror attack.  British and American investigators had recently pushed to continue probing the case in Libya, but officials in that country insisted any new exploration would have to be carried out under Libyan control, according to The New York Times.

U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron, however, set aside any calls for a new inquiry into al Megrahi's conviction in the wake of his death and reiterated his belief that al Megrahi was indeed guilty.

"This has been thoroughly gone through," Cameron said, according to the Edinburgh Evening News. "There was a proper process, a proper court proceeding.  We have to give people the chance to mourn those that were lost."

Cameron added, according to a New York Times report, that al Megrahi should never have been released by the Scottish government and repeated what he said during a U.S. visit two years ago -- that the Lockerbie bombing was "an appalling act of terror."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


North Korea Restored Order to Kim Funeral with Photoshop

KYODO NEWS/AFP/Getty Images(SEOUL, South Korea) -- The funeral procession for Kim Jong-Il was carried out with military precision and when a handful of dawdlers messed up those regimented lines, they were eliminated. From the photo, that is.

A photo released by the North Korea’s state news agency and transmitted by the Germany-based European Pressphoto Agency is slightly different from a photo taken at nearly the identical moment and released by Japanese agency Kyodo News.

The Japanese picture captured a half-dozen men near a camera on a tripod lingering behind the line of mourners on the left side of the boulevard as the motorcade passed by.

In the photo by the North Korean Central News Agency, those men, their camera and their footprints have been digitally removed, restoring absolute order to the crowds lining the boulevard as the cortege passed by.

The alterations were discovered by the New York Times with the help of digital forensics expert Hany Farid of Dartmouth College.

The European Pressphoto Agency, which distributed the doctored North Korea photo, issued a “mandatory kill” for its clients, meaning they were not to use the picture.

The agency granted an exception to ABC News, “for the sole purpose of being able to show and explain what had been altered before the picture was provided to international news agencies by KCNA [North Korean Central News Agency]. We consider this as part of a transparent and responsible clarification process.”

A European Pressphoto Agency spokeswoman told ABC News, “Any kind of digital manipulation violates EPA’s code of ethics.”

<< Click here to see "before" and "after" photos >>

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


North Korean Mourners Fill Streets for Kim Jong Il's Funeral

South Koreans watch the funeral procession of North Korean leader Kim Jong Il at a train station in Seoul on Dec. 28, 2011. PRAKASH SINGH/AFP/Getty Images(PYONGYANG, North Korea) -- Tens of thousands of mourners turned out in snowy Pyongyang Wednesday to bid farewell to the late North Korean leader Kim Jong Il.

The three-hour long procession began at the Kumsusan Memorial Palace where Kim's body has laid since the announcement of his death on Dec. 19.  Kim died of a heart attack at the age of 69 on Dec. 17 while on a train journey, according to North Korean media.

Tens of thousands of military officials in uniforms stood still waiting at the plaza in front of the palace.  At 10 a.m., the hearse carrying Kim's flower-decorated coffin atop made a grand entrance.

Kim's successor, Kim Jong Un, escorted the hearse on foot with his left hand holding onto the sedan's side mirror.  On the left was top military leader Ri Yong Ho, and just behind the young Kim was his uncle and Kim Jong Il's brother-in-law Jang Sung-Taek. Jang is believed to be the power behind the scenes.

The hearse, followed by dozens of cars and military trucks, drove slowly, passing through major monuments in the capitol. Public displays of mourning continued in the freezing weather, with even old women and young children with reddened cheeks, wailing out loud.

The three-hour long procession ended back at the palace with Kim Jong Un again walking alongside the hearse with a salute. Together with the top officials, his father's successor, said to be around 27 years old,  stood with his head bowed while rifles were fired 21 times in salute.

The official funeral will last two days, after which the late Kim will be laid at Kumsusan Memorial Palace where his father Kim Il Sung has been enshrined since 1994.  On Thursday, the nation will hold three minutes of silence for the fallen dictator.

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Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Afghan President Names Replacement for Assassinated Half Brother

SHAH MARAI/AFP/Getty Images(KANDAHAR, Afghanistan) -- Grieving Afghan President Hamid Karzai wasted no time in nominating another family member to take the place of his half-brother Ahmed Wali Karzai, the head of Kandahar’s provincial council, who was assassinated by his bodyguard on Tuesday.

Wali Karzai was considered one of the most influential men in southern Afghanistan, as both a power broker and accused drug lord who nonetheless was a crucial member of President Karzai's administration.

The president was visibly shaken Wednesday as he said goodbye to his half-brother at the graveyard in Karz, where his father -- who was killed by the Taliban in 1999 -- is also buried.  Thousands attended the funeral.

Afterward, Shah Wali Karzai was nominated by President Karzai as the elder of the family and leader of his Populzai tribe.  The gesture was seen as one to consolidate the president's power in Kandahar as well as unite the various tribes against the Taliban.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Afghan President Hamid Karzai Buries Half-Brother Amid Violence

SHAH MARAI/AFP/Getty Images(KANDAHAR, Afghanistan) -- As expected, Wednesday's funeral for President Hamid Karzai's half-brother in Afghanistan didn’t go without incident.

As thousands of people joined the Afghan president in mourning Ahmed Wali Karzai's death, two members of the Afghan intelligence service -- traveling with Helmand provincial Gov. Gulab Mangal -- were injured when their vehicle struck a roadside bomb.

Many predicted on Tuesday that violence could increase in light of the power vacuum left by the controversial figure's death.

Wali Karzai, who was considered one of the most powerful men in Afghanistan and had alleged ties to the country's opium trade, was shot and killed by a guard at his home in Kandahar on Tuesday.  The Taliban has since taken credit for the assassination.

On Wednesday, President Karzai, joined by tribal leaders and government officials, attended a prayer service in Kandahar and then traveled to the nearby village of Karz to bury Wali Karzai. The BBC reports the Afghan president wept and kissed his half-brother's face at the gravesite.

The security detail around Karzai was tight, with helicopters hovering overheard and troops being deployed on the ground, according to the BBC.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Mandela: Albertina Sisulu's Loss One of the Most Painful

Foto24/Gallo Images/Getty Images (File Photo)(JOHANNESBURG, South Africa) -- Thousands of mourners broke out into singing, chanting and applause after Nelson Mandela's wife Graca Machel delivered a message from him at the official funeral of veteran anti-apartheid activist Albertina Sisulu on Saturday.

Sisulu died on June 2, at the age of 92.

Sisulu and her late husband Walter were close friends of Mandela, who met his first wife at their wedding, and with Mandela and Walter Sisulu serving time with together in Robben Island. 

"I would have loved to have been here today to pay my personal respects but it would have been too painful to see you go," Machel read from a statement. "It is difficult to describe the pain and sadness in my heart. You are so much more than a comrade, you are part of my being… you and Walter."

In the statement, Mandela acknowledges the toll seeing his friends die one by one has taken on him.

"Every time it feels as if part of oneself is cut off." The former South Africa president said in the statement.

He described Albertina Sisulu's loss as one of the most painful.

The funeral, which had been a solemn event being held in Orlando Stadium in Soweto, turned into an ANC rally for about 20 minutes following Mandela's statement, with some party leaders yelling "Long Live Mandela" and the crowd resisting calming down for the ceremony to continue.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Dozens Dead, Injured After Suicide Bombing at Pakistani Funeral

USGS [dot] gov(PESHAWAR, Pakistan) -- At least 35 people are dead and several more injured after a suicide bombing at a funeral in Pakistan Wednesday, according to police.

The explosion took place in Adezai, on the outskirts of Peshawar, while a funeral for the wife of a peace commitee leader was taking place.

Pakistani peace committees serve a policing role and conduct anti-militant operations in their respective areas.  They are often targeted by militants.

Rescue operations by local officials are underway.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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