Egyptian state TV has announced on Tuesday that the country’s former president, Hosni Mubarak, who was ousted in the Arab Spring uprising of 2011, has died in Cairo’s Galaa military hospital aged 91.
Mr Mubarak, who was in power for almost three decades, was forced to resign in 2011 following 18 days of protests around the country.
The military leader first came to power in 1981 after the assassination of his predecessor Anwar Sadat, and ruled for 30 years until huge popular protests forced him from office.
Hosni Mubarak is dead. He came into power after Anwar Sadat was killed. Mubarak ruled Egypt for 30 years and stepped down in 2011 following the Arab Spring.
— This Is Africa (@ThisIsAfricaTIA) February 25, 2020
Middle East Eye reports that Mr Mubarak’s son Alaa had been detailing on social media the former president’s worsening health after surgery.
Throughout his rule, he was a stalwart US ally, a bulwark against Islamic militancy and guardian of Egypt’s peace with Israel.
But to the tens of thousands of young Egyptians who rallied for 18 days in Cairo’s central Tahrir Square, Mr Mubarak was a relic, a latter-day pharaoh.
They harnessed the power of social media to muster tumultuous throngs, unleashing popular anger over the graft and brutality that shadowed his rule.
In the end, the military that long nurtured Mr Mubarak pushed him aside on February 11, 2011.
He was convicted along with his former security chief on June 2012 and sentenced to life in prison for failing to prevent the killing of about 900 protesters who rose up against his autocratic regime.
Both appealed against the verdict and a higher court later cleared them in 2014.
The acquittal stunned many Egyptians, thousands of whom poured into central Cairo to show their anger against the court.
Only friends and family will be permitted by Egyptian authorities to attend his funeral, Arabic media reported.
It will reportedly be held on Tuesday afternoon in Cairo’s El-Mosheer Tantawy mosque.