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A year on: Ethiopians mourn flight 302 crash victims in Bishoftu


Hundreds gathered last Sunday at the site where Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 crashed in March 2019 killing all 157 on board, for a ceremony symbolising the country’s emergence from a year-long period of mourning.

The Nairobi-bound Boeing 737 MAX crashed six minutes after takeoff on March 10, 2019. The flight had just taken off from Addis Ababa but plunged into a plain field in the town of Bishoftu located in the Oromia regional state.

The incident triggered the global grounding of the 737 MAX and the worst crisis in Boeing’s history.

Shiferaw Hinsermu, coordinator of the ceremony told journalists: “We believe human beings are created by God. God creates all equally. That is why the Oromo people give respect to all humanity, they don’t know anyone from the 157 deceased. They only know that they are human.”

Abraham Sime who drove from the capital Addis Ababa to attend the ceremony also said: “From the moment the plane crashed they spent their days here, even they were hosting programs related to the grief here for the last one year.

“I think this is the sixth probably, so this is the culture that has to be promoted nationally even to the globe,” he added. Families of Ethiopian victims attended a prayer service at Holy Trinity Cathedral in the capital Addis Ababa.

In the meantime, loved ones of foreign victims have begun arriving in Ethiopia ahead of a private ceremony at the crash site planned for Tuesday.

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