Africa

Late Egyptian leader Anwar Sadat’s widow dies at age 88 – presidency

FILE PHOTO: Gamal Mubarak (R), the son of Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak and head of the higher political committee of the National Democratic Party (NDP), prays with Jehan al-Sadat, the widow of late former President Anwar al-Sadat, at his tomb during his 29th death anniversary in Cairo October 6, 2010. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh/File Photo

Jehan Sadat, the widow of late Egyptian president Anwar Sadat, has died at age 88, the presidency said on Friday.

Sadat, who spent a decade as the country’s first lady, was born in 1933, and had four children following her marriage to Anwar Sadat in 1949.

Following her husband’s assassination in 1981, Sadat went on to teach as well as write, having earned a doctorate in comparative literature from Cairo University.

“She presented an example for the Egyptian woman in supporting her husband during the most difficult and delicate circumstances,” the presidency said in a statement, referring to the October War with Israel in 1973.

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The statement added that Sadat would be posthumously awarded a national medal and have a Cairo highway named after her.

Anwar Sadat participated in the 1952 revolution that overthrew Egypt’s monarchy, and became president in 1970 following the death of Gamal Abdel Nasser.

As first lady, Jehan Sadat took an interest in veterans and those lost in Egypt’s wars, setting up a rehabilitation charity as well as heading Egypt’s Red Crescent Society.

She was also concerned with women’s issues and represented Egypt often in international conferences.

Sadat, who had been in poor health, will be laid to rest on Friday beside her husband at Egypt’s Unknown Soldier memorial.

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