Sudan's Former Prime Minister Sadiq Al-Mahdi Dies Of COVID-19 : Coronavirus Updates The former premier's political party confirmed his death on Thursday. He was 84 and died in the United Arab Emirates, where he was receiving treatment.
NPR logo Sudan's Former Prime Minister Sadiq Al-Mahdi Dies Of COVID-19

Sudan's Former Prime Minister Sadiq Al-Mahdi Dies Of COVID-19

Former Sudanese Prime Minister Sadiq al-Mahdi, pictured in Feb. 2020, died after being infected by the coronavirus. Marwan Ali/AP hide caption

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Marwan Ali/AP

Former Sudanese Prime Minister Sadiq al-Mahdi, pictured in Feb. 2020, died after being infected by the coronavirus.

Marwan Ali/AP

Sudan's last democratically elected prime minister has died of COVID-19-related complications, his party announced early Thursday.

Sadiq al-Mahdi was 84.

He died in hospital in the United Arab Emirates, where he was receiving treatment after becoming infected with the coronavirus, the National Umma Party, which he led until his death, announced Thursday.

Al-Mahdi was prime minister briefly in the mid-60s and again in the 80s before he was overthrown in a Islamist-backed military coup in 1989, paving the path for President Omar Al-Bashir's rise to power. Al-Bashir's autocratic rule lasted three decades before he himself was deposed in a coup last year.

After being forced out of office, al-Mahdi remained a leading politician in Sudan.

As recently as October, al-Mahdi denounced President Trump for brokering a deal for Sudan to begin normalizing ties with Israel, saying that such an agreement "contributes to the elimination of the peace project in the Middle East and to preparing for the ignition of a new war."