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Angola, family row over Dos Santos burial place

People pay their last respects to former Angolan President, Jose Eduardo dos Santos in Luanda, Angola, Monday July 11, 2022   -  
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Angolan government officials and ordinary citizens have been lining up to pay their respects to former President Jose Eduardo Dos Santos, who died last week.

But away from the glowing tributes for the man who ruled the southern African nation until 2017, a dispute over his final resting place is raging.

Dos Santos' older children have sought to have custody of the body and hold a burial in Spain, while the widow, Ana Paula dos Santos, and younger children want his body returned to Angola.

The effort to have Dos Santos interred in Spain is led by Tchize dos Santos, one of the former leader's daughters. 

She has said in a statement that the move is to prevent her father's death from being exploited by current President Joao Lourenco who is campaigning for re-election in August.

Luanda reportedly Wednesday hired a law firm to represent the state in the legal battle. Angola's government and the late president's family tried to come to an agreement on funeral plans, but failed, local media reported.

A Spanish court is expected to make a decision about the body’s custody by end of this week.

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