ice coffin
Grieving man in China keeps wife in an ice coffin at their homeiStock

A heartbroken husband is keeping his dead wife in an ice coffin at their home in south-west China because he cannot bear to be separated from her.

Jiang Maode, 53, has kept the body of his wife Yang Huiging for five months and talks to her every day.

His son hopes his father will arrange for her to be cremated by Christmas. But Maode insists he wants her by his side for the rest of his life.

The police have now asked the Tian Yuan local authorities to investigate the matter. Funeral parlours by law are only allowed to hold onto bodies for five days.

"Just before she passed away I promised her that I would keep her at home," said Maode, who burns incense by the coffin every day.

She died from Leukaemia in December last year, after being diagnosed in July, 2014.

"She asked me to take her home," said Maode. "She couldn't bear to leave me and I could not bear to be separated from her. I promised her that I would keep her at home after she passed away and when she heard this she was very happy.

"When I come home I often speak to her for over an hour, talking about everything that had happened that day."