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Filipinos pay respects to Aquino

Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, wife of Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, pays her respects in front of the body of former leader Corazon Aquino, 2 August 2009
The Malaysia opposition leader's wife was among those to pay their respects

Hundreds of people in the Philippines have been queuing to pay their respects in front of the body of former leader Corazon Aquino, who died on Saturday.

Mrs Aquino's body is lying in state at a Catholic school in Manila, where it will remain until Monday morning.

The Philippines has declared 10 days of mourning for the former president.

Mrs Aquino, Asia's first female president, led the 1986 "people power" uprising that deposed dictator Ferdinand Marcos.

Many of people the people who gathered at the De La Salle school where her body is lying in state were dressed in yellow, the colour associated with the "people power" movement.

Crowds have also been visiting her home and the shrine where her 1986 revolution culminated, leaving yellow flowers and lighting candles.

Flags are at half-mast and hundreds of people have tied symbolic yellow ribbons to cars and trees.

She left a big imprint on our history
Florin Nagit
Mourner

Mrs Aquino had been suffering from colon cancer for more than a year when she died aged 76.

She was catapulted into politics following the murder of her husband, the prominent Senator Benigno "Ninoy" Aquino, who had been preparing to run for president.

After winning the presidential elections in 1986, she went on to run a country deeply divided after years of martial law and communist insurgency.

She battled several coup attempts against her rule, protected the country's fledgling democracy and freed political prisoners.

In recent years, she campaigned against former President Estrada, but then reconciled with him to join protests against incumbent President Gloria Arroyo over allegations of vote-rigging and corruption.

"She left a big imprint on our history," said Florin Nagit, one of the mourners at the De La Salle school.

"I think she made Filipinos think of how it is to live as a Filipino, to be courageous and most of all to be honest and sincere."

News of Mrs Aquino's death drew numerous international tributes.

Among those to visit the school was Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, the wife of Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim.

Mrs Aquino will be buried beside her husband at the Manila Memorial Park in a private ceremony on Wednesday.



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SEE ALSO
Obituary: Corazon Aquino
31 Jul 09 |  Asia-Pacific
Your memories: Corazon Aquino
01 Aug 09 |  Asia-Pacific
Corazon Aquino: Your reaction
01 Aug 09 |  Asia-Pacific
World reaction: Corazon Aquino dies
01 Aug 09 |  Asia-Pacific
Philippines country profile
19 Oct 11 |  Country profiles

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