Hosni Mubarak, Egypt’s ousted president, dies aged 91

World Sergey Matyunin 25-Feb-2020
Hosni Mubarak
ID 18167777 © Markwaters | Dreamstime.com

Hosni Mubarak, Egypt’s ousted president, has died at the age of 91, nine years after he was removed from power during the Arab Spring. He died at a hospital in Cairo this morning after undergoing treatment in intensive care following surgery.

Hosni Mubarak was removed from power in 2011 by the military after 18-day mass protests that saw thousands flood into the capital’s Tahrir Square and 900 Egyptians killed in a violent crackdown.

Two months later he was arrested and spent several years in prison as he stood trial for the deaths of anti-government protesters.

Mubarak was sentenced to life in prison for conspiring to murder 239 demonstrators during the 18-day revolt, but was freed in 2017 after being cleared of the most serious charges.

Egypt’s armed forces today described him as a ‘war hero’. He is set to be given a military funeral.

President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi offered condolences and praised Mubarak’s service during the 1973 war with Israel when he commanded the air force. ‘The Presidency mourns with great sorrow the former President of the Republic, Mr. Mohammed Hosni Mubarak,’ he said in a statement.

It referred to Mubarak as ‘one of the leaders and heroes of the glorious October war, as he assumed command of the Air Force during the war that restored dignity and pride to the Arab nation.’

Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas hailed him as a supporter of the Palestinian cause and mourned the death ‘with great sorrow’.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed ‘deep sorrow’ over Mubarak’s death. ‘President Mubarak, a personal friend of mine, was a leader who guided his people to peace and security, to peace with Israel,’ Netanyahu said.

However, to thousands of young Egyptians who rallied in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, Mubarak was a symbol of autocratic misrule.