Boris Yeltsin, former president of Russia, dies at 76

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Monday, April 23, 2007

Boris Yeltsin in 1993

Former President of Russia Boris Yeltsin has died at age 76, according to a Kremlin spokesperson.

"Today, at 15:45 (11:45 GMT) Boris Nikolayevich Yeltsin died in the Central Clinical Hospital as a result of a deteriorating cardio-vascular problem," said the spokesperson. Yeltsin had a history of heart problems.

Boris Nikolayevich Yeltsin (Russian: Бори́с Никола́евич Е́льцин) was the first President of the Russian Federation from 1991 to 1999. The Yeltsin era was a traumatic period in Russian history— marked by widespread corruption, economic collapse, and enormous political and social problems.

Yeltsin maintained a low profile since his resignation, making almost no public statements or appearances. However, on February 1, 2006, Yeltsin celebrated his 75th birthday. He used this occasion as an opportunity to criticize a "monopolistic" United States foreign policy, and to state that Vladimir Putin was the right choice for Russia.

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