Arab leaders and other dignitaries prayed Wednesday over the body of United Arab Emirates President Sheik Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, paying final respects to a man who transformed his desert country into an oil and business hub.
Outside the Sheik Sultan bin Zayed Mosque, thousands of Emiratis lining the streets set aside Qurans they were reading and put down posters of Zayed to say the prayers. Afterward, men in their traditional white robes mobbed the van carrying Zayed, who died Tuesday at 86, away for burial.
A cause of death has not been released for Zayed, who led the unification and modernization of the seven tiny emirates on the eastern edge of the Arabian Peninsula.
Zayed's eldest son, Sheik Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, was chosen to succeed him a president.