Death of Desmond Tutu: Tributes across the world

“He was an extraordinary human being. A thinker. A leader. A shepherd”: in unison with reactions from around the world, the Mandela Foundation described the loss of Desmond Tutu as “immeasurable”, for which a week of mourning is being observed, from Monday until the funeral on Saturday in Cape Town.
On Sunday evening, Joe and Jill Biden, saying they were “heartbroken”, said in a statement that the “example” of the Anglican archbishop who died on Sunday at the age of 90 “transcends borders and will resonate through the ages”. The U.S. presidential couple also spoke of the “power of Desmond Tutu’s message of justice, equality, truth and reconciliation.
Earlier, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa had expressed “his deep sadness” after the death of this “unparalleled patriot”. His death “is a new chapter of mourning in our nation’s farewell to a generation of exceptional South Africans who bequeathed us a liberated South Africa,” he said, referring to “a man of extraordinary intelligence, integrity and invincibility against the forces of apartheid.
The UN also paid tribute to Desmond Tutu, “a source of inspiration for generations around the world” and whose death “leaves a huge void”, in the words of its secretary general, Antonio Guterres.
Former US president Barack Obama, the nation’s first Black leader, called Tutu “a mentor, a friend, and a moral compass” who could “find humanity in his adversaries”. “A universal spirit, Archbishop Tutu was grounded in the struggle for liberation and justice in his own country, but also concerned with injustice everywhere,” said the fellow Nobel Peace laureate in a statement.
Queen Elizabeth II paid her tribute to Tutu and called him a “man who tirelessly championed human rights in South Africa and across the world”. “I remember with fondness my meetings with him and his great warmth and humour,” she said in a statement.
“Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu was a guiding light for countless people globally. His emphasis on human dignity and equality will be forever remembered. I am deeply saddened by his demise, and extend my heartfelt condolences to all his admirers. May his soul rest in peace,” Indian prime minister Narendra Modi wrote on Twitter. Pope Francis salutes a man “Mindful of his service to the gospel through the promotion of racial equality and reconciliation in his native South Africa, his holiness commends his soul to the loving mercy of almighty God.”
“We are all devastated,” said Mary Robinson, chair of The Elders, a group of global leaders working for peace and human rights that Tutu co-founded.
“He inspired me to be a ‘prisoner of hope’, in his inimitable phrase,” said Robinson, a former president of Ireland. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson called Tutu “a critical figure in the fight against apartheid and in the struggle to create a new South Africa”.

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