Former Philippines dictator Ferdinand Marcos buried in Heroes' cemetery

Story highlights

  • Surprise announcement follows protests and a quashed court appeal
  • Police chief only found out 24 hours ago that the burial would take place

Manila (CNN)Former Philippines President Ferdinand Marcos has been buried at the National Heroes' Cemetery in Metro Manila.

The surprise decision to give the former dictator a hero's burial Friday has triggered protests by opponents who had launched a court challenge to have the burial stopped.
    The burial marks the end of a three-decade-long campaign by his family to have his remains buried in the cemetery, the national monument known as "Libingan ng mga Bayani" in Tagalog.
      Many Filipinos object to his interment in the heroes' cemetery, given how brutal his rule was. Thousands were imprisoned and tortured under Marcos' reign. He ruled with an iron fist for two-and-a-half decades until his ouster in the 1986 "People Power" revolution.
      He died in 1989, three years after being exiled to Hawaii. His body was eventually brought back to a mausoleum in the family's stronghold of Ilocos Norte, in the Philippines' northeast, where it had remained until today.
      Marcos' daughter, Imee Marcos, posted video online of the coffin arriving by helicopter, as well as family members gathering.
      Images tweeted by CNN Philippines showed a line of police officers with riot shields outside the cemetery gates. A 21-gun salute was sounded as the funeral rites were conducted.
      An image taken from a video posted by Imee Marcos shows Marcos' casket being carried to its resting place.
      Lt. Col Ray Tiongson, interim spokesperson of the Philippine Army, told CNN the army had provided assistance for the honorary interment.
      He said the Army provided a "battalion-size military honor (guard)" -- around 100 soldiers.
      Members of the media were not allowed to witness the ceremony, CNN Philippines reported.
      Imee Marcos offered a statement on behalf of the family, thanking President Rodrigo Duterte and the Supreme Court for ruling that his burial was legal. She said that she was also thankful that the family were able to realize Marcos' wish to be buried with his fellow soldiers.
      Marcos family members, including his children, Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos and Imee Marcos, and his widow Imelda Marcos (in black) attend the ceremony.
      Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella read out a statement on the funeral.
      "Hopefully both sides will exercise maximum tolerance and will come to terms with the burial of former President Ferdinand Marcos," he said from Peru, where the President is on tour.
      "(President Duterte) further said, he hopes everyone will find space in their hearts to forgive and set free those who have hurt or injured them."
      Philippine National Police Chief Ronald Dela Rosa told CNN Philippines that he was only given 24 hours notice of the burial. He said that Duterte was also notified.
      "(Duterte) knows. There are no special instructions," he said. "We just have to make sure the burial is peaceful and there nothing untoward happens."


      Vice President Leni Robredo, who opposed the burial, said the surprise burial showed the Marcos family was acting "like a thief in the night."
      "(Marcos) is no hero. If he were, obviously his family would