December 26 (Reuters) – South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu, a veteran of the fight against the white minority regime, died Sunday at the age of 90.
Here are the reactions to his death.
PRESIDENT CYRIL RAMAPHOSA
Register now for FREE and unlimited access to Reuters.com
âThe passing of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu is another chapter of mourning in our nation’s farewell to a generation of exceptional South Africans who left us a liberated South Africa.
“Desmond Tutu was an unequaled patriot; a leader of principle and pragmatism who gave meaning to the biblical idea that faith without works is dead.”
US PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN AND FIRST LADY JILL BIDEN
“On this morning after Christmas, we are heartbroken to learn of the passing of a true servant of God and of the people, Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa.”
“His courage and moral clarity helped inspire our commitment to change US policy toward the repressive apartheid regime in South Africa.”
AMERICAN VICE PRESIDENT KAMALA HARRIS
âArchbishop Desmond Tutu was a staunch opponent of apartheid and a committed human rights defender. He has inspired millions of people, not only in South Africa, but around the world, to support those who fight for freedom and justice.
THABO MAKGOBA, ARCHBISHOP OF CAPE TOWN
âDesmond Tutu’s legacy is moral strength, moral courage and clarity. He felt with people. In public and alone, he cried because he felt people’s pain. joy.”
NELSON MANDELA FOUNDATION
âHis contributions to struggles against injustice, locally and globally, are matched only by the depth of his reflection on creating liberating futures for human societies. He was an extraordinary human being. A thinker. A thinker. leader. A shepherd. “
âHis Holiness Pope Francis has learned with sadness of the death of Archbishop Desmond Tutu … Conscious of his service to the Gospel through the promotion of racial equality and reconciliation in his native South Africa, his Holiness surrenders his soul to the loving mercy of Almighty God. “
FORMER AMERICAN PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA
âBishop Desmond Tutu was a mentor, a friend and a moral compass for me and for so many others. A universal spirit, Bishop Tutu was rooted in the struggle for liberation and justice in his own country, but also concerned about injustice everywhere.
“He has never lost his playful sense of humor and his willingness to find humanity in his opponents, and Michelle and I will be sorely missed.”
QUEEN ELIZABETH OF THE UNITED KINGDOM
âI am joined by the entire royal family in being deeply saddened by the news of the death of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, a man who tirelessly defended human rights in South Africa and around the world. I fondly remember my meetings with him and his great warmth and humor.
âThe loss of Archbishop Tutu will be felt by the people of South Africa, and by so many in Britain, Northern Ireland and across the Commonwealth, where he was held in such high affection and esteem. “
UN SECRETARY-GENERAL ANTONIO GUTERRES
âI am deeply saddened by the passing of Archbishop Desmond Tutu – an imposing global figure for peace and justice, the voice of the voiceless and an inspiration to people around the world.
“We will continue to draw our strength from his humanity, his passion and his determination to fight for a better world for all.”
FORMER US PRESIDENT JIMMY CARTER
“No word better illustrates his ministry than the three he contributed to a work of art at The Carter Center: Love, Freedom and Compassion.”
JOHN STEENHUISEN, LEADER OF THE SOUTH AFRICAN OPPOSITION PARTY THE DEMOCRATIC ALLIANCE
“A true South African giant has passed away today, but his spirit will live on … in our continuing efforts to build a united, successful and non-racial South Africa for all … moral compass that has brought us back.”
JOSEP BORRELL, HEAD OF EU FOREIGN POLICY
“Desmond Tutu has done the world a lot of good. His legacy of resistance to apartheid and inequality lives on in South Africa today and for all mankind.”
ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY JUSTIN WELBY
âArchbishop Desmond Tutu was a prophet and a priest, a man of words and of action – one who embodied the hope and joy that were the foundations of his life.
THE DALAI LAMA, SPIRITUAL LEADER OF TIBET
âThe friendship and spiritual bond between us was something we cherished. Archbishop Desmond Tutu was completely dedicated to serving his brothers and sisters for the greater common good.â
BERNICE KING, DAUGHTER OF MARTIN LUTHER KING
“I am saddened to learn of the death of a world sage, human rights leader and powerful pilgrim on earthâ¦ We are better because he was here.”
WORLD COUNCIL OF CHURCHES
âHis sense of humor and infectious laughter have helped resolve many critical situations in South African political and religious life. He has managed to break through almost every deadlock. He shared the laughter with us. and the grace of God over and over again. “
THE PRIME MINISTER OF THE UNITED KINGDOM BORIS JOHNSON
“He was a critical figure in the fight against apartheid and in the struggle to create a new South Africa – and his spiritual leadership and irrepressible good humor will be remembered.”
DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER OF THE UNITED KINGDOM DOMINIC RAAB
âHis adage, ‘Don’t raise your voice, improve your argument’, has never been more apt.”
PRINCE CHARLES OF BRITTANY AND THE DUCHESS OF CORNWALL
“My wife and I are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Archbishop Desmond Tutu whose bravery in speaking out against the evil of apartheid and highlighting the threat of climate change has been an inspiration to all of us.”
MEXICAN PRESIDENT ANDRES MANUEL LOPEZ OBRADOR
âOne of his sayings is terse, yet powerful and true: ‘If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have taken the side of the oppressor.’â
BASIM NAEEM, SENIOR OFFICER OF THE PALESTINIAN ISLAMIST MILITARY GROUP HAMAS
âOur Palestinian people have lost a staunch supporter of their march towards freedom and independence. Father Desmond Tutu has spent his entire life fighting racism and defending human rights, especially on Palestinian land.
WASEL ABU YOUSSEF, MEMBER OF THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE OF THE PALESTINE LIBERATION ORGANIZATION
âFather Desmond Tutu was one of the biggest supporters of the Palestinian cause. He had always defended the rights of the Palestinians to win their freedom and rejected the Israeli occupation and apartheid.
UNAIDS, THE JOINT UNITED NATIONS PROGRAM ON HIV / AIDS
âHe was a powerful voice in the fight against AIDS, fighting denial, demanding access to treatment for all, calling against discrimination of people living with HIV and defending the human rights of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people, women and children. His work on the prevention and treatment of HIV and tuberculosis has changed global paradigms and saved many lives.
Register now for FREE and unlimited access to Reuters.com
Report from the South African office, Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru, Diane Bartz in Washington and Nidal al-Mughrabi in Gaza; Editing by David Goodman, John Stonestreet, Hugh Lawson and Diane Craft
Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.