25 Feb, 2020
The controversial former president of Egypt, Hosni Mubarak dead at 91. He ruled for three decades before being jailed on corruption charges.
Egyptian media reported that Mubarak died several weeks after undergoing surgery. A family member told AFP that the former ruler died at Cairo’s Galaa military hospital.
In a statement, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi hailed Mubarak as a “military leader and war hero” and offered his condolences to his family.
The former president, who assumed power and forced out of office 30 years later, was released from prison in 2017. The former president was detained after the 2011 ‘Arab Spring’ uprising in Egypt and received a three-year prison sentence in 2015 for using public funds to live a lavish lifestyle.
The Egyptian strongman faced years in prison, but his early release came after he was acquitted of charges that he had ordered the killing of protesters during the 2011 uprising.
Thou his reign was viewed as an era marred by corruption and autocracy. However, he is widely credited with maintaining peace between Egypt and Israel, despite his country’s uneasy history with the Jewish state.
Mubarak used his success in the military to propel his political career. He joined the Egyptian air force in 1949 and rose through the ranks, eventually becoming chief of the Egyptian air force in 1972. Mubarak was hailed as a hero after the Egyptian air force reportedly dealt mass casualties to Israeli forces during the Yom Kippur War in 1973.
Although Washington applauded his removal in 2011, for many years he was a trusted ally of the United States. He received more than $1 billion in US military aid the same year that he was deposed.