Sunday, 15 December 2013

Mandela laid to rest in Qunu, his Childhood village and Hometown


Mandela's ex-wife Winnie Madikizela Mandela, left, and his widow Graca Machel, center, stand by Mandela's casket during his funeral ceremony in Qunu on December 15.
Planes fly overhead during the burial.
The casket arrives for the ceremony in Qunu on December 15.
A 21-gun salute is fired as the funeral procession carrying the casket of Mandela moves through Qunu.


With military pomp and traditional rituals, South Africa buried Nelson Mandela on Sunday, the end of an exceptional journey for the prisoner turned president who transformed the nation.Mandela was laid to rest in his childhood village of Qunu.
Tribal leaders clad in animal skins joined dignitaries in dark suits at the grave site overlooking the rolling green hills.
As pallbearers walked toward the site after a funeral ceremony, helicopters whizzed past dangling the national flag. Cannons fired a 21-gun salute, its echoes ringing over the quiet village.
Mandela's widow, Graca Machel, dabbed her eyes with a handkerchief as she watched the proceedings
"Yours was truly a long walk to freedom. Now you have achieved the ultimate freedom in the bosom of God, your maker," an officiator at the grave site said.
Military pallbearers gently removed the South African flag that draped the coffin and handed it to President Jacob Zuma, who gave it to Mandela's family.
At the request of the family, the lowering of the casket was closed to the media.

Nelson Mandela's body was laid to rest in a family plot, after political and religious leaders paid tribute to South Africa's first black president at a state funeral service.
His widow, Graca Machel, and President Jacob Zuma were present for the private, traditional Xhosa burial at Mr Mandela's ancestral home in Qunu.
Mr Zuma had earlier told the larger funeral service that South Africans had to take his legacy forward.
Mr Mandela died on 5 December aged 95.
The last of 10 days of commemorations for Mr Mandela began with his coffin being taken on a gun carriage from his home to a giant marquee where his portrait hung behind 95 candles - each representing a year of his life.
South African military helicopters staged a fly-past as Mr Mandela's coffin was interredSouth African military helicopters staged a fly-past as Mr Mandela's coffin was interred
The coffin of Nelson Mandela is carried by military honour guardEarlier some 4,500 people - including foreign dignitaries - attended the state funeral

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