The Latest: Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi dies at 92
TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — The Latest on the death of Tunisia’s president (all times local):
Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi, the North African country’s first democratically elected leader, has died. He was 92.
An official in the president’s office told The Associated Press that Essebsi died Thursday morning at the Tunis military hospital, where he was taken the night before.
That was the third time in recent weeks that he had been hospitalized.
Under Tunisia’s constitution, the president of the parliament will assume the presidency for 45 to 90 days while elections are organized.
Essebsi won office in 2014 in the wake of the country’s Arab Spring uprising.
He recently announced he wouldn’t run in the election scheduled for November, saying a younger person should lead the country.
Tunisian media are reporting the country’s 92-year-old president has been taken to a military hospital for the third time in recent weeks.
Radio station Mosaique and state broadcaster Wataniya have reported Beji Caid Essebsi was hospitalized Wednesday night for unspecified health trouble.
Essebsi’s office did not make an announcement or respond to requests for comment.
He is Tunisia’s first democratically elected president, having won office in 2014 in the wake of the country’s Arab Spring uprising. He recently announced he wouldn’t run in the election scheduled for November, saying a younger person should lead the country.
Essebsi was hospitalized twice in June. His office released a video of the president meeting with the defense minister Monday, and Essebsi was visibly weakened, raising concerns about his fitness for office.