Former US Secretary of State Warren Christopher dies

Sacramento – Former US Secretary of State Warren Christopher has died of cancer aged 85. Mr Christopher will be remembered for helping bring peace to Bosnia in the 1990s and negotiating the release of American hostages in Iran in 1981, BBC reports. His understated manner as top US diplomat from 1993-97 led to his being called the “stealth” secretary of state. “Careful listening may be the secret weapon,” he once said in a speech. “I observed some time ago that I was better at listening than at talking.” Mr Christopher passed away peacefully at home in California late on Friday after complications from bladder and kidney cancer, his family were reported as saying.

Born on 27 October 1925 in North Dakota, he rose from modest circumstances to become a highly successful Los Angeles lawyer. Before his career in diplomacy Mr Christopher served as a deputy attorney general under President Lyndon Johnson in the late 1960s. He made headlines as deputy secretary of state in the Carter administration by negotiating the release in 1981 of 52 American hostages in Iran. His efforts won him the US’s highest civilian award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom. “The best public servant I ever knew,” Jimmy Carter wrote in his memoirs.

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