Spain mourns first woman defence minister Carme Chacon

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MADRID: Spain is mourning Carme Chacón, the former defence minister who died on Sunday and was famously photographed in 2008 reviewing troops in Afghanistan while seven months pregnant. Ms Chacón was found dead at her Madrid home, aged 46, after a neighbour had raised the alarm. A congenital heart problem was the likely cause of death. She was Spain’s first woman defence minister, symbolising the change of culture since the end of military rule. Her son Miquel is eight years old. In 2007 Ms Chacón also served as housing minister in the Socialist government led by ex-Prime Minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero. Spanish politicians were among the many Spaniards who expressed shock and sympathy over Ms Chacón’s sudden death. Mr Zapatero said he was “heartbroken at the death of my comrade and friend”. He said “we feel emptiness, because of the enormity of this loss, for Spanish democracy and for all socialists”. The current Popular Party (PP) defence minister, Dolores de Cospedal, said “I deeply mourn the ex-minister”. “My heartfelt condolences to her family, friends and the Socialist Party. RIP.”–Agencies

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