February 21, 2008 / 3:06 PM / 11 years ago

Former acting president of Egypt dies in Malaysia

CAIRO (Reuters) - Sufi Abu Taleb, who served as acting president of Egypt for eight days in October 1981 after the assassination of Anwar Sadat, died on Thursday in Malaysia at the age of 82, the Egyptian state news agency MENA reported.

Through his position as speaker of the Egyptian parliament, Abu Taleb automatically became acting president on the assassination of Sadat at a military parade on Oct. 6, 1981.

But he was not a serious contender for the presidency and he quickly stepped aside in favour of Hosni Mubarak, who was vice president under Sadat and who has ruled Egypt ever since.

Abu Taleb, who retired from public life many years ago, was in Malaysia for a reunion of graduates from al-Azhar University, an Islamic institution based in Cairo, MENA said.

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