Everything we know about the death of Mikhail Gorbachev

Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev died on August 30 at the age of 91, according to Russian state media. The cause of death was a “severe and protracted illness,” according to a Moscow hospital, per CNN.

News of the former political leader’s death comes nearly a month after he was hospitalized with kidney complications. At the time of his admission, a spokesman for Gorbachev confirmed that he had been undergoing treatment for his kidney for several years, but gave no further details on the politician’s condition.

Gorbachev was widely known for dismantling the Iron Curtain and forging partnerships with Western governments. The former President of the USSR is also credited with peacefully ending the Cold War that led to the fall of the Soviet Union and his resignation in 1991. According to Reuters, the famous leader is to be buried next to his wife at the Novodevichy Cemetery in Moscow. according to his family’s wishes.

Gorbachev has faced many health complications over the years

Mikhail Gorbachev’s death may seem sudden to some, but it seems the political icon has been struggling with health complications for years. In 2014, the former Soviet leader was hospitalized after a general examination, but vowed to regain his health. “My health has been moderate for a week and today I am in the hospital. My health is deteriorating,” he told RIA Novosti agency (via The Times of Israel). “You know my character. I am determined to fight for my life,” he added. Five years later, NDTV reported that Gorbachev was hospitalized again and treated for pneumonia. Gorbachev himself later confirmed his condition but indicated that he had made a full recovery.

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After his death, Gorbachev’s supporters took to social media to pay tribute to the politician. “The only Soviet leader I’ve ever liked. RIP to a great man,” one person tweeted. Another wrote: “He has done great things for the world and for Russia. [too] bad, everything he did is basically gone.”

Current Russian President Vladimir Putin has yet to address Gorbachev’s death.