Vaclav Havel passes away


Václav Havel dies at 75

Václav Havel, the first post-Communist president of both Czechoslovakia and the Czech Republic, known worldwide as a promoter of human rights, died on Sunday morning, likely due to complications from a recent bout of his chronic respiratory illness. Havel, who turned 75 in October, had been in a fragile state since checking in to the Central Military Hospital in Prague in early March, and was seldom seen in public in recent months. His wife, actress Dagmar Havlová, and several nuns were at his bedside when he died, Czech public television reported.

Thousands of Czechs yesterday poured onto Wenceslas Square, the center of the 1989 Velvet Revolution, to light candles and leave flowers. (ČTK)