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Ethiopia buries Airline crash victims

East Africa

Ethiopia buries Airline crash victims

Report by Hassan John

Remains of Ethiopians passengers who died in the Boeing 737 Max 8 plane crash, six minutes after take off, near Addis Ababa last weekend  have been buried after a funeral service at the Holy Trinity Cathedral in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s capital on Sunday March 17.

Mourners, dressed in black, carrying pictures of their deceased relatives, wailed as they walked with empty coffins, draped in flags, which only symbolised the bodies of their dead. At the memorial, the Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox church, Abune Mathias, called out names of dead, including the captain of the ill-fated plane, Yared Getachew.

The co-pilot, Ahmed Nur Mohammod Nur, was given a separate burial in accordance with Islamic rites.

Families mourn their dead – Photo Credit: Mulugeta Ayene

Earlier in the week families had visited the site of the crash to see the wreckage. They were later given small sacks of scorched earth and ashes from the crash site in place of remains of their families since it was difficult to identify the bodies. “The soil came as it became impossible to identify bodies and hand over remains to family members,” one family member told the Associated Press. “We will not rest until we are given the real body or body parts of our loved ones.”

The families also, within the week, received visitors and mourners, in tents, in line with Ethiopian tradition.

Dagmawit Moges, the country’s transport minister, said investigation into the crash of flight 302 would take “considerable time,” and would take up to six months to identify the deceased and issue death certificates.

Investigations into the crash still continues as countries ground all their Boeing 737 Max 8 aircrafts.

Photo credit: Featured image/BBC