FILE - President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi - Reuters
CAIRO – 26 July 2019: Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi decreed three days of mourning, following the death of the Tunisian president on Thursday, who he earlier lauded his efforts to develop and stabilize the country.
Countries including Algeria and the UAE also declared a three-day mourning, while Tunisia declared a seven-day mourning and cancelled artistic performances and cultural events.
Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi passed away at the age of 93. He had been admitted to a military hospital due to an emergency health problem Wednesday, said his son Hafez.
Sisi on Thursday expressed his sincere condolences to the family of Essebsi and the Tunisian people, stressing that the "historic contribution" of the late president in Tunisia's path toward development and stability will be remembered by the history.
Essebsi was the fifth president of Tunisia since the declaration of the Republic in 1957.
He was elected as the President of Tunisia on December 21, 2014 for 5 years. However, he had announced in April 2019 that he will not run for a second term.
In June, rumors were circulated that Essebsi died, after he was moved to the military hospital for "serious illness." However, an official statement denied the news, and Essebsi could reportedly leave the hospital after few days.