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Mikhail Gorbachev bows out of Margaret Thatcher funeral due to health issues

- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 11, 2013

A spokesman for the former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev said he cannot attend the former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher's funeral because of poor health.

Mr. Gorbachev, 83, had been widely expected to be one of the major figures to attend. Ms. Thatcher — along with President Reagan — forged a close working relationship to fuel the end of the Cold War and collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.

He issued a statement after her death on Monday, calling her "a heavyweight politician and a striking person," BBC reported.

Downing Street officials said Thursday the guest list for the funeral was still in the works — but that Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner is not invited, BBC reported.

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