Ex Turkish Cypriot Leader Denktash Dies

Posted January 13th, 2012 at 3:50 pm (UTC-5)
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Former Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash has died after a long illness.

Denktash's family announced Friday that he had died earlier in the day. He was almost 88.

Denktash, who had experienced deteriorating health for some time, was admitted to a hospital in northern Cyprus earlier this month, where he developed multiple organ failure.

Denktash was a staunch, lifelong advocate for a separate Turkish Cypriot state on the island that has been split since 1974, when Turkey invaded after a coup by supporters of a union with Greece.

Denktash led the north as president from 1983 until 2005.