Democracy icon Aquino dies

Cory, as people fondly called her, had been hospitalised in the Makati Medical Centre in Manila since late June after her health deteriorated and the cancer spread to other parts of her body. “Our mother peacefully passed away at 3.18 am on August 1, 2009, of cardio-respiratory arrest,” Senator Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III said.

In her death, former president Aquino was hailed for her role in toppling the 20-year dictatorship of late strongman Ferdinand Marcos during the four-day “people power” revolution in February 1986. “Today, Philippines lost a national treasure,” President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo said in a statement released from Washington. “Cory Aquino helped lead a revolution that restored democracy and the rule of law in our country at a time of great peril,” she said. “I am announcing today (Saturday) that we will officially observe a 10-day period of national mourning.”

The flags in Philippines were flown at half-mast following Aquino’s death, while people left flowers outside her home in the Manila suburban city of Quezon and the military performed a gun salute in honour of the late president.

Aquino, the first female president of the Philippines, led the country from 1986 to 1992.
She was born on January 25, 1933 as the sixth of eight children of a landed family in the northern Philippine province of Tarlac.

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