Last Ethiopian emperor laid to rest: AP

Date: Mon, 6 Nov 2000 08:15:04 -0600

Last Ethiopian emperor laid to rest

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) - Bells tolled and thousands of Ethiopians wailed and applauded Sunday as Haile Selassie, their last emperor, was finally laid to rest 25 years after his mysterious death. As leaders of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church stood by, resplendent in their colorful robes, elderly veterans of Ethiopia's 1936-41 struggle against Italian occupation carried the coffin - draped in the nation's red, green and gold flag - up the steps of Trinity Cathedral. The emperor's family, friends and associates embraced at their first public gathering since 1974, when he was overthrown by Marxist military officers. A crypt had been waiting at the cathedral since Haile Selassie's remains were discovered under a concrete slab on the grounds of his former palace in 1992 - 17 years after he died under house arrest. Officially, his death at age 83 was due to complications from a prostate condition. The Haile Selassie I Foundation, which had worked for eight years to give the emperor a suitable burial, claims he was assassinated.

Posted: Fri - February 7, 2003 at 06:41 PM