In Salisbury, Rhodesia, one of the biggest crowds ever to pack the Anglican Cathedral of Saint Mary and All Saints attended a memorial service for the victims of last Sunday's air disaster (3 September).
In Salisbury, Rhodesia, one of the biggest crowds ever to pack the Anglican Cathedral of Saint Mary and All Saints attended a memorial service for the victims of last Sunday's air disaster (3 September). The crowds spilled onto the street, and some demonstrators among them demanded a stronger policy against guerrillas by Prime Minister Ian Smith. Earlier, two of the youngest victims of the Air Rhodesia Viscount crash were given their own funeral service.
SYNOPSIS: At a small church is Salisbury, the full significance of the conflict in Rhodesia was brought home to yet more families. The service was for an 11-year-old boy, and a 20-year-old girl, who were involved in the Viscount airliner crash. A Rhodesian Government Minister has announced that a missile caused the crash and the Patriotic Front's co-leader Mr. Joshua Nkomo claimed his movement was responsible.
Altogether, there were 48 deaths following the missile attack and massacre. Thirty-eight people died in the crash, and witnesses and military authorities said ten survivors were shot dead half and hour later by a group of Patriotic Front guerrillas. Mr. Nkomo denied his men were responsible for the shootings. Reuters reports than there is intense emotion and bitterness over the incident among Rhodesia's 250,000 whites.
It was little comfort to those at the funeral that eight people escaped with their lives. The Dean of Salisbury, the Very Reverend John Da Costa, bitterly condemned the killings, and what he called a `deafening silence' from world leaders on the incident. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Ian Smith has promised a new, tough course of action, rather than negotiation to solve the problems of embattled Rhodesia.