Uzbek President Islam Karimov has died after suffering a stroke at the age of 78, three diplomatic sources told Reuters on Friday, leaving no obvious successor to take over.
“Yes, he has perished,” one of the sources said, referring to the veteran leader who continues to be in the hospital.
Before, he was reported to be in critical condition with his health worsening days after he suffered a stroke.
“Dear compatriots, it’s with an incredibly heavy heart that we advise you that the condition of our president deteriorated sharply and, according to physicians, it’s evaluated as essential,” the statement posted on a government web site said.
78, Karimov, dominated the ex-Soviet country for over 25 years. The veteran leader’s youngest daughter Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva on Monday announced on social media before hinting two days later that he was making a healing which he was in ‘steady’ condition in intensive care after a cerebral haemorrhage.
Opposition outlet Fergana news agency had reported on Thursday that work was going on in his hometown of Samarkand in preparation for Karimov’s funeral, with part of the city centre cordoned off and the roads being cleaned.
Despite persistent claims over his health recently, Karimov hadn’t left any successor that was clear.