Reactions to the death of Desmond Tutu describe the Nobel Peace Prize laureate as a “dear friend” with a “mischievous sense of humour” and “extraordinary intellect”.
South Africa’s anti-apartheid icon Archbishop Desmond Tutu has died aged 90, sparking tributes from around the world.
Here is a look at some of them:
South African President Ramaphosa
South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa honoured Tutu’s tireless fight against injustices of all colours when announcing the archbishop’s death.
“The passing of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu is another chapter of bereavement in our nation’s farewell to a generation of outstanding South Africans who have bequeathed us a liberated South Africa,” he said in a statement.
“Desmond Tutu was a patriot without equal; a leader of principle and pragmatism who gave meaning to the biblical insight that faith without works is dead,” he said.
“A man of extraordinary intellect, integrity and invincibility against the forces of apartheid, he was also tender and vulnerable in his compassion for those who had suffered oppression, injustice and violence under apartheid, and oppressed and downtrodden people around the world.”
UK PM Boris Johnson
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he was “deeply saddened” by Tutu’s death, calling him a “critical figure” in defeating apartheid and building a new South Africa.
“He was a critical figure in the fight against apartheid and in the struggle to create a new South Africa – and will be remembered for his spiritual leadership and irrepressible good humour,” Johnson tweeted.
READ MORE: Desmond Tutu: A life in pictures
Mary Robinson, chair of The Elders, a group of global leaders working for peace and human rights, said “we are all devastated at the loss of Archbishop Desmond Tutu”.
“He inspired me to be a ‘prisoner of hope’, in his inimitable phrase,” said Robinson, who is also the former president of Ireland.
The Elders said in a statement they “lost a dear friend, whose infectious laugh and mischievous sense of humour delighted and charmed them all”.
“The world has lost an inspiration – but one whose achievements will never be for gotten, and whose commitment to peace, love and the fundamental equality of all human beings will endure to inspire future generations,” they said.
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said Tutu’s passing was “a big blow not only to the Republic of South Africa where he leaves behind huge footprints as an anti-apartheid hero but to the entire African continent where he is deeply respected and celebrated as a peacemaker”.
“Archbishop Tutu inspired a generation of African leaders who embraced his non-violent approaches in the liberation struggle,” he said.
The Nelson Mandela Foundation
The foundation said the loss of Tutu was “immeasurable”.
“He was larger than life, and for so many in South Africa and around the world his life has been a blessing.
“He was an extraordinary human being. A thinker. A leader. A shepherd.”
Tutu and Nelson Mandela first met in the 1950s but did not see each other again for decades, on the day Mandela was released from prison in 1990. Mandela stayed at Tutu’s home that night.
Thabo Makgoba, Archbishop of Cape Town
The Archbishop of Cape Town, Thabo Makgoba, said the life of Tutu, a “deeply spiritual person”, should be celebrated.
“He named wrong wherever he saw it and by whomever it was committed. He challenged the systems that demeaned humanity.”
Bassem Naeem, Senior Official with Palestinian group Hamas, said “Palestinian people lost a strong supporter of their march towards freedom and independence.
“Father Desmond Tutu spent his entire life struggling against racism and defending human rights and especially on the Palestinian land.”
Source: TRTWorld and agencies