Pistorius to mourn Steenkamp at private ceremony

Olympic athlete Oscar Pistorius stands inside the court as a police officer looks on during his bail hearing at the magistrate court in Pretoria, South Africa. Photo / AP
Olympic athlete Oscar Pistorius stands inside the court as a police officer looks on during his bail hearing at the magistrate court in Pretoria, South Africa. Photo / AP

South African star athlete Oscar Pistorius will mourn the girlfriend he is charged with murdering in a private memorial service, his publicist said.

"Oscar specifically requested the memorial service as he continues to grieve and remains in deep mourning for the loss of his partner Reeva (Steenkamp)," a statement said.

Pistorius is charged with intentionally shooting dead Steenkamp, 29, at his house in Pretoria on Valentine's Day.

But the Paralympic and Olympic athlete says he mistook Steenkamp for an intruder in the dead of night.

Steenkamp, a model and law graduate, was cremated in her hometown, the southern city Port Elizabeth, last Tuesday - the first day of Pistorius' bail hearing.

He repeatedly broke down crying in court at the mention of her name.

"Since it is such a sensitive issue, Oscar has asked for a private service with people who share his loss, including his family members who knew and loved Reeva as one of their own," the statement said.

Pistorius was released on bail last Friday and is due back in court June 4.

- AFP

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