(The Guardian) Buckingham Palace has reportedly declined a request to return the remains of an Ethiopian prince who came to be buried at Windsor Castle in the 19th century.
Prince Alemayehu, a claimed descendant of the biblical King Solomon, was taken to England – some say “stolen” – after British soldiers looted his father’s imperial citadel after the Battle of Maqdala in 1868.
He died aged 18, after an unhappy childhood, and was buried at St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle at the request of Queen Victoria.
For 150 years, Ethiopians have been asking when Alemayehu will come home. The Ethiopian government has pushed repeatedly for the prince’s remains to be returned. High-profile figures, such as Lemn Sissay, the poet and author, have joined campaigns to repatriate the young prince’s remains.
But in a statement sent to the BBC, a Buckingham Palace spokesperson said removing his remains could affect others buried in the catacombs of St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle.
“It is very unlikely that it would be possible to exhume the remains without disturbing the resting place of a substantial number of others in the vicinity,” the palace said.