05/02/2011 AT 7:00 AM ET
Osama bin Laden, America’s Public Enemy No. 1 for the past decade, has been buried at sea in accordance with strict Islamic law, it is being reported Monday morning. The ritual follows his death on Sunday in a firefight with U.S. forces in Pakistan.
Positive identification of his remains was made by the American military prior to the disposal of his body, say news reports.
As word of bin Laden’s death spread, as was confirmed by President Barack Obama in a late-night special address from the East Room of the White House, large groups of people gathered around the United States, including outside the White House, on college campuses and at Ground Zero in New York City, where nearly 3,000 people were killed on Sept. 11, 2001, in an attack ordered by bin Laden’s al Qaeda terrorist group.
Emotions at these rallies were mixed: celebratory of the death of a mass murderer, yet somber for those whose lives were lost, and watchful for possible reverberations from the death. At Ground Zero, “The Star-Spangled Banner” was sung.