Taiwan’s ‘Mr Democracy’ Lee Teng-hui dies aged 97 in Taipei

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Taiwanese former President Lee Teng-hui attends an event to campaign for Taiwan to be recognised as a participant in the United Nations and World Health Organisation, in Taipei, Taiwan March 10, 2018. — Reuters pic
Nevin Al Sukari - Sana'a - Taiwanese former President Lee Teng-hui attends an event to campaign for Taiwan to be recognised as a participant in the United Nations and World Health Organisation, in Taipei, Taiwan March 10, 2018. — Reuters pic

TAIPEI, July 30 — Former Taiwan President Lee Teng-hui, dubbed “Mr Democracy” for burying autocratic rule in favour of freewheeling pluralism, died at the age of 97, the official Central News Agency reported today.

Lee became Taiwan’s first democratically elected president in 1996, in a landslide victory that followed eight months of intimidating war games and missile tests by China in waters around Taiwan in an attempt to scare voters.

He thrived on defying China’s drive to absorb the island it regards as a wayward province and hoped for Taiwan to be “a country of democracy, freedom, human rights and dignity.” — Reuters

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