Kofi Annan's body returns home to Ghana

Ghanaian soldiers surround the coffin of former UN secretary-general Kofi Annan.
Ghanaian soldiers surround the coffin of former UN secretary-general Kofi Annan.

The body of former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has received a hero's welcome upon landing at Kotoka International Airport in Ghana's capital Accra.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was with Annan's widow and family members on Monday as uniformed soldiers brought Annan's coffin down from the aircraft amid solemn music played by a detachment of Ghana's armed forces. Prayers followed.

To signify Annan's return home, the UN flag covering the coffin was replaced by a Ghanaian one.

Annan will lie at the Accra International Conference Center, where people can pay their respects in the days before Thursday's state funeral.

Annan died in August in Switzerland at age 80.

The grandson of tribal chiefs, he was the first black African to work as UN secretary-general, and was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize.

Australian Associated Press