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Stars that died 2010

Friday, November 22, 2013

Danielle Mitterrand, French activist, widow of François Mitterrand, First Lady of the French Republic (1981–1995), died she was 87.


Danielle Mitterrand was the wife of French President François Mitterrand, and president of the foundation France Libertés Fondation Danielle Mitterrand  died she was 87..[1]

(born Danielle Émilienne Isabelle Gouze; 29 October 1924 – 22 November 2011)


Background

When she was seventeen years old, her family (her parents were teachers) aided the French Resistance and helped lodge men of the Maquis (French Resistance), and she became a liaison officer in the Resistance. She met François Mitterrand there, and married him three months after the Liberation, on 28 October 1944.[1]
She created the France-Libertés Foundation in 1986, when she was First Lady, with the fusion of three smaller associations which had been established in 1981.[1] In 1996 Madame Mitterrand was one of the winners of the North–South Prize.[2]
Danielle Mitterrand had three sons: Pascal (who died in childhood), Jean-Christophe and Gilbert Mitterrand.[1]

Opinions

Mrs. Mitterrand was a longtime supporter of Cuba and its Marxist-Leninist government.[3] However, during Fidel Castro's 1995 visit to France, she also helped secure the release of imprisoned Cuban dissident Yndamiro Restano Díaz, who was reportedly freed at her request.[4][5]
She also supported the Sandinistas when her late husband gave them military aid in their war against US-backed forces in Nicaragua.[6] She was very critical with respect to Turkey, opposing its accession to the European Union and supportive of the Kurdistan independence movement.[7] She voiced her views in favour of Sahrawi separatists,[8] Subcomandante Marcos,[9] and the Tibetan people,[10] among others.
Even as First Lady, she spoke up against human rights violations, including in countries with which the French government was seeking to maintain good relations; she earned the ire both of the Chinese government and of King Hassan II of Morocco, in particular. Her France-Libertés Foundation provided financial support to local human rights initiatives abroad, and also financed access to medicine and education in poor countries.[1]
She supported a "no" vote in the 2005 French referendum on the European Constitution: "I denounce the power of the economy over people, a system that turns individuals into elements in an economic equation, does not respect the poor and excludes everyone that does not live up to the principle of profitability." [11]

Works

  • These men are first our brothers (Ces hommes sont avant tout nos frères), Ramsay, 1996, on the Indians of Chiapas
  • Torture in Tunisia: Committee for freedom and human rights in Tunisia (La torture en Tunisie : Comité pour le respect des libertés et des droits de l’homme en Tunisie), Le temps des cerises, 2000


To see more of who died in 2011 click here

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