Ethiopian leader dies overseas
Updated at 8:21 pm on 21 August 2012
Ethiopia's Prime Minister Meles Zenawi has died after weeks of illness, according to state media.
A government spokesperson said the 57-year-old died in an overseas hospital on Monday - but did not say where or give details of his ailment.
Mr Meles had not been seen in public for two months and was reportedly sick in a hospital in Brussels. Some reports say he died of a sudden infection during his recovery.
He was last seen in public at the G20 summit in Mexico in June and speculation about his health increased when he missed an African Union summit in Addis Ababa in July.
Mr Meles took power as the leader of rebels that ousted communist leader Mengistu Haile Mariam in 1991, the BBC reports.
He had dominated Ethiopian public life since the 1990s, as president and then prime minister.
He was known to be austere and hardworking, with a discipline forged from years spent in the guerrilla movement.
Kenya's Prime Minister Raila Odinga told the BBC he feared for the stability of Ethiopia following Mr Meles' death.
Mr Odinga said the situation in the country was fragile and ethnic violence continued to be a threat.
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