Leading U.S. envoy Richard Holbrooke, 69, died in Washington, D.C. Monday following surgery for a tear in his aorta. World leaders came forward today to praise the special envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan for his historic work in brokering peace in regions devastated by conflict. Best remembered for bringing about the end of the 1992-1995 Bosnia war—Europe’s bloodiest conflict since WWII—Holbrooke was instrumental in the diplomatic effort aiming to stabilize war-torn Afghanistan. While the Taliban appeared to rejoice at news of his death, Holbrooke’s main opponent in the war in Bosnia, Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic, expressed “sadness and regret”. Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon said in a statement: “Today marks the 15th anniversary of the signing of the Dayton Accords, the agreement that Mr. Holbrooke brokered to end the war in Bosnia and open the door to stability, and democracy for the people of the western Balkans.” Fittingly, Holbrooke’s last words were: “You’ve got to stop this war in Afghanistan.”
Looking for more?
Get the best of Maclean's sent straight to your inbox. Sign up for news, commentary and analysis.