Margaret Thatcher, ex-première ministre britannique et une des figures politiques du XXe siècle, est morte lundi à Londres à l'âge de 87 ans d'un accident vasculaire cérébral, un décès qui a conduit l'actuel chef du gouvernement David Cameron à interrompre sa mini-tournée en Europe.

"C'est avec une grande tristesse que Mark et Carol Thatcher annoncent que leur mère, la baronne Thatcher, est morte paisiblement ce matin, à la suite d'un accident vasculaire-cérébral", a indiqué le porte-parole de la "Dame de fer", Lord Tim Bell, dans un bref communiqué.

"Nous avons perdu un grand dirigeant, une grande première ministre et une grande Britannique", a immédiatement réagi David Cameron, soulignant sa "grande tristesse".

Membre comme Margaret Thatcher du Parti conservateur, David Cameron, qui se trouvait en Espagne au moment de l'annonce de sa mort, a décidé d'écouter la visite qu'il avait entamée en Europe pour défendre sa réforme de l'Union européenne et de rentrer à Londres.

Les obsèques de la "Dame de fer" donneront lieu à une cérémonie, mais il n'y aura pas de funérailles nationales, a précisé Downing Street. Margaret Thatcher sera incinérée, selon la même source.

La Reine Elizabeth II s'est également dite "triste d'apprendre" son décès, dans un communiqué publié par Buckingham, précisant qu'elle allait envoyer un "message de sympathie" à la famille de Margaret Thatcher.

A l'étranger, l'ex-président soviétique Mikhaïl Gorbatchev a salué en Mme Thatcher "une grande personnalité politique" qui "restera dans l'histoire".

En Pologne, Lech Walesa, chef historique du syndicat polonais Solidarité, a rendu hommage à celle "qui a contribué à la chute du communisme" en Europe.

Seule femme à avoir été première ministre au Royaume-Uni et personnalité majeure de la vie politique dans ce pays, Margaret Thatcher ne faisait plus que de rares apparitions.

Atteinte de la maladie d'Alzheimer et affaiblie physiquement, elle ne s'exprimait plus en public depuis 2002, sur les conseils de ses médecins, après avoir été victime de plusieurs attaques cérébrales.

Sa fille Carol avait révélé en 2008 dans ses mémoires que sa mère souffrait de démence sénile depuis sept ans.

Margaret Thatcher avait été hospitalisée en décembre dernier pour subir l'ablation d'une tumeur à la vessie, une opération alors qualifiée de "mineure" par son entourage.

"Maggie", qui a exercé trois mandats, a marqué la vie politique britannique du 20e siècle.

Issue d'un milieu modeste, elle avait été élue députée à 34 ans, avant de prendre la tête du parti conservateur en 1975, puis celle du gouvernement quatre ans plus tard.

Elle avait relancé l'économie du pays, considéré à son accession au pouvoir comme "l'homme malade de l'Europe". Mais elle reste célèbre pour son ultra-libéralisme autant que pour son intransigeance dans ses rapports avec les syndicats, les mineurs et les prisonniers de l'IRA, qui lui a valu son légendaire surnom de "Dame de fer".

Elle a profondément divisé l'opinion, s'attirant autant d'admiration que de haine tenace.

Récemment, le film "La Dame de fer", dans lequel elle est incarnée par Meryl Streep, avait relancé le débat sur l'héritage du thatchérisme.

Son mari, l'homme d'affaires Denis Thatcher, avec qui elle a eu les jumeaux Mark et Carol, est mort en 2003.

La vie de Margaret Thatcher en photos, par nos collègues du Huffington Post UK
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  • Margaret Thatcher - General Election

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher leaving 10 Downing Street after the Conservative Party won a convincing majority in the General Election.

  • Denis and Margaret Thatcher

    Baroness Margaret Thatcher reunited with her husband Sir Denis Thatcher, this afternoon when he returned home after spending the last few weeks recovering from his six-hour coronary by-pass operation. * Sir Denis the husband of former Conservative Prime Minister Baroness Thatcher, who is 87-years-old, said he was looking forward to a relaxing weekend in their home in Belgravia, West London. 15/6/03: His family said that the 88-year-old had been readmitted to the Royal Brompton Hospital in London for tests following major heart surgery in January. *30/10/03: Baroness Thatcher will be joined by her twin children, Carol and Mark, at a memorial service to pay tribute to her late husband, Sir Denis Thatcher. Sir Denis died in June, aged 88 having undergone major heart surgery six months earlier from which it appeared he had made a good recovery.

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    David Montgomery/Getty Images)British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, circa 1985. (Photo by David Montgomery/Getty Images) (Photo by David Montgomery/Getty Images)

  • Politics - Helmut Kohl Visit - Chequers, Buckinghamshire

    Margaret Thatcher and Chancellor Helmut Kohl of West Germany at ease in the grounds as they had three hours of 'relaxed and very friendly' talks at Chequers, the Prime Minister's country residence. They agreed more emphasis should be laid on the warmth of Anglo-German relations.

  • Thatcher and David Cameron meet for dinner

    Baroness Thatcher and Conservative leader David Cameron meet for dinner at the Goring Hotel in Victoria, south-west London.

  • Order of the Garter ceremony

    Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh sit with the Knights and Ladies of the Garter in the Waterloo Room at Windsor Castle before a Garter Service at St George's Chapel in the castle grounds. * The Knights and Ladies of The Most Noble Order of the Garter are, from left: front row, The Duke of Grafton, The King of Spain, The Queen of Denmark, The Duke of Gloucester, The Princess Royal, The Duke of Edinburgh, The Queen, The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Kent, Grand Duke Jean of Luxembourg, The Queen of the Netherlands, The King of Norway. Second row; Page of Honour The Honorable John Bowes-Lyon, Sir Edward Heath, The Duke of Devonshire, Lord Sainsbury of Preston Candover, The Duke of Wellington, The Chancellor Lord Carrington, Lord Richardson of Duntisbourne, Lord Bramall, Viscount Ridley, Lord Kingsdown, Baroness Thatcher, Page of Honour Lord Carnegie. Third row; Lord Inge, The Duke of Abercorn, Lord Ashburton, Sir Edmund Hilary, Sir Timothy Coleman, Sir William Gladstone and Sir Anthony Acland.

  • Royalty - State Visit of Queen Beatrix - 10 Downing Street

    Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands (l) and Prince Claus (2nd from right) with Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher at 10 Downing Street.

  • Politics - PM Margaret Thatcher - Clydach Vale, Rhondda Valley

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher with Welsh Secretary Peter Walker at Clydach Vale in Rhondda Valley, where she saw derelict land being reclaimed as part of a factory development.

  • Royalty - Queen Beatrix and Margaret Thatcher - London

    Queen Beatrix and Prince Claus of the Netherlands meet with Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher at Downing Street during their state visit to Britain.

  • Margaret Thatcher's papers

    File photo dated 17/06/07 of Margaret Thatcher and the Duke of York as a hand-written note by Lady Thatcher appears to show how she grappled with her response to the Duke of York's deployment as part of the Falklands task force.

  • Margaret Thatcher's papers

    EMBARGOED TO 0001 FRIDAY MARCH 22 File photo dated 01/10/88 of Prime Minster Margaret Thatcher with Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe as Lady Thatcher's 1982 private papers include a number of brief mentions of figures who would go on to play a significant role in public and political life. They include an early meeting with Robert Mugabe, who had been elected as Prime Minister of Zimbabwe in 1980.

  • Margaret Thatcher Lays Flowers at Bradford City Fire Site

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, watched by her husband Denis, lays a wreath among the hundreds of other floral tributes near the turn stile area of the Bradford City football ground, Yorkshire, where many of the 52 victims of the tragedy were found.

  • Dutch Royalty - Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands and Prince Claus - 10 Downing Street - London

    During the second day of their State visit to Britain, Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands and Prince Claus are greeted by Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher at 10 Downing Street, London, for luncheon.

  • Politics - Thatcher Education Secretary - 1970

    Conservative MP Margaret Thatcher (the future British Prime Minister), Secretary of State for Education and Science.

  • Politics - Thatcher wedding day - 1951

    Unsuccessful Conservative candidate for Dartford, Margaret Hilda Roberts, 26, on the day of her wedding to Denis Thatcher at Wesley's Chapel, in London.

  • Politics - Conservative Women's Conference - 1973

    A popular event in the two-day programme of the Conservative Women's Conference was the address on education by Margaret Thatcher, Education Secretary.

  • Thatcher and the Red Army Dancers.

    Margaret Thatcher enjoying a chat with dancers from the Red Army Ensemble -- Moscow Military District, at the Royal Albert Hall.

  • Politics - Thatcher Wedding Day - 1951

    Unsuccessful Conservative candidate for Dartford, Margaret Roberts, 26, at her wedding to 36-year-old Denis Thatcher at Wesley's Chapel, in London.

  • Politics - Conservative Party Conference - Blackpool - 1970

    Prime Minister, Edward Heath sports a smile which lasted during a three-minute ovation he received at the opening of the annual Conservative conference at the Winter Gardens. Sharing the platform with him is Margaret Thatcher, Secretary for Education and Science.

  • Politics - Margaret Thatcher - 1975

    Margaret Thatcher, Conservative MP, receives a kiss from her husband Denis.

  • Politics - Margaret Thatcher - 1975

    Conservative Party leader Margaret Thatcher, at working her office at the House of Commons.

  • Politics - Margaret Thatcher - 1975

    Conservative MP Margaret Thatcher, 49, in her Chelsea home kitchen, before making her challenge for the Conservative Party leadership and a place in political history.

  • Politics - Thatcher and Reagan - 1975

    Former California Governor Ronald Reagan presenting a silver dollar medallion to Opposition Leader Margaret Thatcher when he visited her in her House of Commons office.

  • Politics - Conservative Local Government Conference - 1979

    Margaret Thatcher speaking at the Conservative Local Government Conference at Caxton Hall, London, when she angrily accused the Government of having tried to whip up non-existent emotions in the referendum campaigns.

  • Politics - Margaret Thatcher - Shadow Education Secretary - 1969

    Margaret Thatcher, spokesperson on Education in the Conservative Shadow Cabinet, at the Houses of Parliament.

  • Politics - General Election 1979

    Margaret and Denis Thatcher get away from it all with their 25-year-old twins, Mark and Carol, by strolling through the grounds of Scotney Castle, Kent where Mrs Thatcher has a National Trust flat. She is relaxing before the battle ahead to become the first female Prime Minster.

  • Politics - Margaret Thatcher - Chelsea, London

    Conservative Party leader Margaret Thatcher in a jubilant mood outside her Chelsea home, after Tory victories in by-elections at two former Labour strongholds - Workington and Walsall North.

  • Silver wedding anniversary.

    Margaret and Denis Thatcher with their children, Mark and Carol, at their Chelsea home on the day of their silver wedding anniversary.

  • Margaret Thatcher's papers

    File photo dated 26/4/1982 of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Wide divisions within the Conservative party over how the Government should respond to Argentina's invasion of the Falklands are revealed today as Margaret Thatcher's 1982 private papers are made public.

  • Politics - Margaret Thatcher - Vacuum Interrupters Ltd - 1981

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher wears protective clothing as she tours the premises of Vacuum Interrupters Ltd.

  • Politics - General Election 1979

    Margaret Thatcher waves from the doorstep of Number 10 Downing Street in Whitehall, London, on the day of the General Election.

  • Politics - General Election 1979

    Conservative leader Margaret Thatcher in a thoughtful mood when she hosted her party's press conference in London, as the 1979 General Election campaign entered its final week.

  • Politics - First Female Prime Minister - Downing Street - 1979

    Britain's first women Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher arrives at no.10 Downing Street to take up office following the Conservative victory in the general election.

  • Politics - Conservative Party Conference - Blackpool - 1979

    A jubilant Margaret Thatcher acknowledging the standing ovation after her speech on the final day of the Conservative Party Conference at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool.

  • Thatcher Falkland Island surrender talks

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher facing an enthusiastic reception from well-wishers outside No 10 Downing Street, in London, on her return from the Commons, where she told MPs talks on a surrender by Argentina of the Falkland Islands were in progress.

  • Margaret Thatcher in garland.

    Margaret Thatcher addressing a crowd at Stoneleigh near Coventry wearing a garland presented to her by an Asian constituent.

  • Politics - General Election 1983

    Margaret Thatcher with her husband Denis greets supporters at a rally in Fleetwood during her campaign visit of the North West.

  • Politics - Conservative Party Conference - Blackpool - 1977

    Conservative party leader Margaret Thatcher with 16 year old Rother Valley schoolboy, William Hague, after he received a standing ovation from delegates at the Conservative Party conference in Blackpool.

  • Margaret Thatcher won a landslide victory

    10th JUNE: On this day in 1983 Margaret Thatcher won a landslide victory to start her second term of power. The window of success frames the jubilant Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher waving to well-wishers after her election win. At Tory Party headquarters, she told flag-waving supporters "My victory is greater than I had dared to hope".

  • Politics - Thatcher and Tongan king - 1983

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher looks pensive as she awaits the arrival of King Taufa'ahau Tupou IV of Tonga at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London.

  • Politics - General Election 1983

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher returning to 10 Downing Street after winning the election. Instead of entering her official residence, she insisted on walking to the end of the street and the corner of Whitehall to shake hands with well-wishers.

  • Politics - Reagan and Thatcher - 1984

    Ronald Reagan has a word in the ear of Margaret Thatcher on the day that Thatcher becomes the longest-serving Prime Minister in the 20th century.

  • Politics - Thatcher and Reagan - 1984

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, left, with American President Ronald Reagan and his wife Nancy.

  • Politics - Channel Tunnel Agreement - Canterbury Cathedral - 1986

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher with French President Francois Mitterrand at the Chapter House, Canterbury Cathedral, when the Channel Fixed Link Treaty was signed by the foreign secretaries.

  • Politics - General Election 1987

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher gives a three-fingered salute outside 10 Downing Street as she begins her third successive term of office following the Conservative victory in the general election.

  • Margaret Thatcher and Francois Mitterand - Channel Tunnel

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and French President Francois Mitterand at Canterbury Cathedral for the signing of the Channel Fixed Link Treaty.

  • Politics - Economic Summit Banquet - London

    Left to right: Queen Elizabeth II, American President Ronald Reagan and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher at Buckingham Palace when they attended a special banquet hosted by the Queen following the London Economic Summit.

  • Politics - 250th Anniversary of the Prime Minister's office - Downing Street, London

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher is joined by Queen Elizabeth II and five former PMs at 10 Downing Street, London, as she hosts a dinner celebrating the 250th anniversary of the residence becoming the London home of Prime Ministers. (L-R) James Callaghan, Lord Home, Thatcher, Lord Stockton, the Queen, Lord Wilson and Edward Heath.

  • Politics - Margaret Thatcher - Victory Ball - 1987

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and her husband Denis lead off the dancing during the Victory Ball at the Empress Hall, Blackpool.

  • Politics - Margaret Thatcher 10 Years in Power - Downing Street, London

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and her husband Denis on the doorstep of 10 Downing Street, London, ten years after they moved in, following the 1979 general election.

  • Politics - Thatcher and Family - Downing Street - 1989

    Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher outside 10 Downing Street, in London, with her son Mark, daughter-in-law Diane, and two-month-old grandson Michael.



Quelques citations de Margaret Thatcher
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Les réactions sur Twitter
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  • MC

    Peu importe sa couleur politique, Thatcher était une grande dame, et doit rester un modèle de réussite pour les femmes en politique. REP

  • Annette

    Relire les citations de #Thatcher et comprendre combien la dame de fer était perspicace et pertinente.

  • jb_r

    Décès de Margaret Thatcher, figure essentielle du 20ème siècle, réformatrice incomparable, 1ère femme PM du Royaume-Uni. #tristesse

  • Rémi Foleszynski

    Décès de Margaret #Thatcher, une femme de Fer qui avait une vision pour son pays #respect

  • Alexandre Bassinet

    Avec le décès de M. Thatcher, on ne va plus entendre parler de Cahuzac, Fabius et leurs amis. Une aubaine pour le pouvoir en place.

  • Guillaume Renard

    Ces gens de gauche qui se réjouissent du décès de Thatcher alors qu'ils nous faisaient la morale sur Chavez...

  • Abdoulaye

    La Dame de fer n'est plus.Margaret #Thatcher est décédée. Mais hélas ses idées sont en vie !!

  • Dorian

    Ce qui est sûr, c'est que la dame de Fer n'avait pas un caractère très aimant. #Thatcher

  • Naïkema Nicolas

    La "Dame de fer" est morte ce matin, le monde a besoin de plus de Margaret Thatcher#tatcher

  • Deidda SportWear

    Je n'ai pas connu Margareth #Thatcher mais comme tout le monde, elle va me manquer. Adieu Dame de Reuf... http://t.co/BMwh2zt23v



Margaret Thatcher: ses visages au cinéma
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  • Meryl Streep dans "La Dame de fer"

  • Andrea Riseborough dans la peau d'une jeune Margaret Thatcher

  • Extrait de "The Long Walk to Finchley"

  • Lindsay Duncan dans "Margaret" diffusé sur la BBC en 2009

  • Lindsay Duncan dans "Margaret"

  • Patricia Hodge dans "The Falkands Play"

  • Patricia Hodge dans "The Falklands Play"

  • Jennifer Saunders dans "The Hunt for Tony Blair" diffusé sur Channel 4

  • Sylvia Syms dans "Thatcher: The Final Days" diffusé en 1991 sur ITV

  • Greta Scacchi dans "Jeffrey Archer: The Truth" parodie "sexy" du mandat de Thatcher

  • Steve Nallon et sa poupée de Margaret

  • Steve Nallon, un des plus célèbres imitateurs de la Dame de fer

  • Janet Brown, connue pour ses imitations de Margaret Thatcher

  • Dans "Rien que pour vos yeux", Roger Moore - 007 - reçoit un coup de fil de Margaret Thatcher, jouée par Janet Brown