Supporters of former President Ngo Dinh Diem attended a Requiem Mass at Saigon Church on Saturday (2 November), and then walked in procession through the streets of the South Vietnamese capital to the President's grave in the Mac Chi Cemetery.
GV Saigon Church
SV Diem's followers and officials file out of church
GV Policeman using walkie-talkie and crowd outside church entrance
SV Two policemen, one using walkie-talkie
GV Van leading procession past church and SV women in procession (2 shots)
SCU Wreath and TILT UP TO Diem's photo on altar in cemetery
SV Procession (mainly women) filing into cemetery
SV Officials standing in line
CU Truong Vinh Le laying wreath and SV making obeisance to grave (2 shots)
SV Officials stand in silence before grave (2 shots)
Initials BB/2317 NPJ/AH/BB/2332
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Background: Supporters of former President Ngo Dinh Diem attended a Requiem Mass at Saigon Church on Saturday (2 November), and then walked in procession through the streets of the South Vietnamese capital to the President's grave in the Mac Chi Cemetery.
A simple memorial ceremony was performed before the grave by various notable supporters, including the former Chairman of the South Vietnamese National Assembly, Trong Vinh Le, and Senator Ngo Trong Hieu, formerly the Minister for Civic Action. Also present was the Chairman of the Senate Mr. Tran Van Lam, and President Diem's brother, Mr. Ngo Dinh Nhu.
The church service and the graveside ceremony did not attract a large number of people, and it seemed that most of those that did attend were women. The previous day, the beleaguered President Nguyen Van Thieu had visited a military cemetery to light a flame before the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier to commemorate National Day.
As with the earlier ceremony, the procession for former President Diem was provided with a tight security net, to prevent any further demonstrations by Catholics and Buddhists against president Thieu. Earlier in the week, the man who replaced President Diem after his downfall, General Minh, had attacked President Thieu by saying the country needed a new "set of leaders".