Dodi Gave Di 'Friendship' Diamond

ByABC News via logo
September 3, 2006, 8:52 AM

Sept. 3, 2006 — -- At the time of her death, Princess Diana was wearing a diamond ring given to her by Dodi Al-Fayed, according to a new book by Diana's former butler, Paul Burrell.

The $5,000 ring was a friendship ring, not an engagement ring, according to Burrell, who claims the princess was not ready to remarry.

"Her precise words to me were: 'I want another marriage like I want a bad rash,' " he writes in his new book, serialized in Britain's Mail on Sunday.

Why does the ring matter? Because Dodi's father, Mohammed Al-Fayed, claims his son, a Muslim, was about to pop the question, so the young lovers were killed on royal orders. It is a claim everyone implicated strenuously denies.

"He [Dodi's father] must accept the Princess and Dodi had no more than a summer fling," Burrell writes. "The world must stop believing Diana and Dodi were due to get married, because that simply isn't true."

Ingrid Seward, editor of Majesty Magazine, said that Burrell's motives may not be entirely pure.

"Paul Burrell needs to make money, and he makes money from his memories of Diana," Seward said. "But they are pretty valid, because he was there and nobody else was."

Investigations into Diana's death have fanned the flames for conspiracy theorists. French investigators concluded the couple's driver, Henri Paul, was to blame. He was drunk, they said.