Former President of France Jacques Chirac dies at the age of 86 on September 26. He served as the head of state from 1995-2007. Fredric Salat-Baroux, Jacques Chirac's son-in-law reportedly claimed that he died Thursday morning surrounded by his family, peacefully. He further claimed that a special venue would be set-up for the French to pay their respect. The UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson condoled the former President in a tweet saying Jacques Chirac shaped the destiny of his nation and his loss will be felt throughout France.
Jacques Chirac was a formidable political leader who shaped the destiny of his nation in a career that spanned four decades. His loss will be felt throughout France, across the generations.— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) September 26, 2019
Toutes mes condoléances aujourd’hui à sa famille, à ses proches et au peuple français.
President Emmanuel Macron reportedly canceled a public engagement and scheduled a televised address to pay his respect to the former President. The National Assembly apparently interrupted a sitting to hold a minute's silence. The former socialist President Francois Hollande addressed the Former President's wife Bernadette Chirac, daughter Claude and his family in a tweet by releasing a testimony of his respect and affection. He further added, the French, whatever their convictions have lost a statesman and also a friend. The former British Prime Minister also paid respect to the deceased. He reportedly said that Chirac was a towering figure in French and European politics over many decades. He will be remembered for his defiant opposition to the US-led invasion of Iraq.
Jacques Chirac was twice elected as the head of the state. He was France's second longest-serving-post-war president after his Socialist predecessor Francois Mitterrand. He will be remembered for angering the US with his public opposition to the 2003 war in Iraq. He was known for cultivating ties with leaders across the Middle East and Africa. Chirac was the first President to meet with the US President George W Bush after the September 11 terrorist attack. He was also the first French head of the state to recognize the role of the Vichy regime in the Holocaust. Jacques Chirac had two daughters with his wife Bernadette Chirac. The couple also adopted a Vietnamese girl. Chirac was long known to have been suffering from ill-health.
(With inputs from agencies)