Zimbabwe ex-President Robert Mugabe Dies At 95

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Robert Mugabe, the Zimbabwean independence icon turned authoritarian leader, has died aged 95.

The country’s first post-independent leader died nearly two years after he stepped down, following 37 years in office.

Mr Mugabe had been receiving treatment in a hospital in Singapore since April. He was ousted in a military coup in 2017 after 37 years in power.

The former president was praised for broadening access to health and education for the black majority.

But later years were marked by violent repression of his political opponents and Zimbabwe’s economic ruin.

His successor, Emmerson Mnangagwa, expressed his “utmost sadness”, calling Mr Mugabe “an icon of liberation”.

“It is with the utmost sadness that I announce the passing on of Zimbabwe’s founding father and former President, Cde Robert Mugabe,” Mnangagwa posted on Twitter early on Friday.

“Mugabe was an icon of liberation, a pan-Africanist who dedicated his life to the emancipation and empowerment of his people. His contribution to the history of our nation and continent will never be forgotten.

“May his soul rest in eternal peace,” he added.

Mr Mnangagwa had been Mr Mugabe’s deputy before replacing him.

He was hospitalised in Singapore for months for an undisclosed ailment, Mnangagwa had confirmed earlier this year.

Officials often said he was being treated for a cataract, denying frequent private media reports that he had prostate cancer.

No further details were immediately available about the circumstances of his death or where he died.

Mugabe was forced to step down by the military in November 2017 following nationwide mass protests.

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