Thousands Of Mourners Pay Final Respects To Victims Of The Ethiopian Airlines Crash

Empty caskets for the victims were solemnly carried through the streets.

Photo credit:SAMUEL HABTAB/AFP/Getty Images

| March 18 2019,

5:14 pm

Loved ones, close friends and others mourned the 157 victims who lost their lives in the Ethiopian Airlines crash. 

According to The Guardian, thousands took part in the funeral procession leading to the Holy Trinity Cathedral in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The streets filled with priests, incense, empty coffins and mourners holding pictures of those lost in the fatal incident. 

Some Muslim families expressed a different sorrow. Due to the wreckage and scorched earth, finding their loved ones' remains will require months of searching.

Religious customs dictate the deceased must be buried as soon as possible, but because of the nature of this tragedy, burial will be halted. Investigators estimate remains will be identified within six months, but it is unclear how long it will take.

"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."

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The Ethiopian Airlines flight to Kenya crashed shortly after takeoff. All passengers and crew on board were killed in the crash. 

At the center of the incident was the new Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft, which has been grounded in China, the United States and other Western nations due to technical issues.

In the last few days, investigators have discovered glaring similarities to the Lion Air jet crash in Indonesia. France 24 reports the black box found among the planes' wreckage indicate nearly identical issues. It also crashed within minutes of taking off.

French authorities are still recording data from the black box from the Ethiopian Airlines crash. At the moment, they have managed to turn over voice recordings from the pilot to Ethiopian flight officials.

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