Egypt’s former President Hosni Mubarak dead at 91

CAIRO (AFP) – Egypt’s former president Hosni Mubarak, who ruled for three decades before he was ousted amid the Arab Spring protests in 2011, died yesterday at age 91.

The burly autocrat with the trademark sunglasses went on to spend years behind bars for his role in the deaths of protesters but was freed in 2017 after the convictions were overturned.

His death was confirmed by the presidency and on state TV, and his son Alaa Mubarak tweeted that “this morning my father, President Mubarak, passed away”.

Mubarak’s brother-in-law General Mounir Thabet, told AFP that the family was by Mubarak’s side at the hospital. A military funeral was planned for today, a senior official told AFP.

Mubarak had long been battling illness and was recently admitted to a Cairo military hospital’s intensive care unit.

Tributes poured in from leaders in the Middle East, where Mubarak, a key ally of the United States (US) had at times served as a mediator, especially in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised Mubarak’s commitment to “peace and security” while Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas said he mourned the death “with great sorrow” and hailed Mubarak’s support of the Palestinian cause.

File photo of former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. PHOTO: AFP