Hosni Mubarak, who ruled Egypt for three decades until overthrown by a revolution in the “Arab Spring” last year, was declared clinically dead by his doctors on Tuesday, the state news agency MENA said in a report confirmed by a hospital source.
Mubarak was 84 and had been sentenced to life in prison earlier this month.
“Former president Hosni Mubarak has clinically died following his arrival at Maadi military hospital on Tuesday evening,” MENA said, quoting medical sources. “Mubarak’s heart stopped beating and was subjected to a defibrillator several times but did not respond.”
The 84-year-old had suffered a stroke and been defibrillated before being transferred to hospital from the prison where he has been held since he was sentenced to life over the murder of protesters.
Mubarak had faced the gallows, with the prosecution calling for the death penalty.
After he was flown to Tora prison on Cairo’s outskirts after the sentencing, he refused to leave the helicopter and security officials said he “suffered from a surprise health crisis” before they finally convinced him to go in.
His health has fluctuated since then, with doctors defibrillating him twice on June 11. He has reportedly suffered acute depression, as well as periodic increases in blood pressure and shortness of breath.
His was a spectacular fall from grace that sent shock waves across the Middle East and beyond when he announced his resignation on February 11, 2011 after an 18-day popular revolt.
Until anti-government protests erupted on January 25, Mubarak seemed untouchable as president of the most populous nation in the Arab world, backed by the United States and the military, from whose ranks he had emerged.
Mubarak had survived 10 attempts on his life and his health has long been a subject of speculation. But in the end, it was the people who brought down Egypt’s latter-day pharaoh.
Published In The Express Tribune, June 20th, 2012.
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