International community pays homage to American civil rights icon John Lewis

Greg Nash

International leaders paid homage to the late Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), signifying the global reach of the civil rights leader’s legacy.

Leaders from across Europe honored Lewis, who died late Friday night at the age of 80. Lewis carved his place in history with a lengthy career advocating for civil rights, from being beaten to within an inch of his life on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala., on “Bloody Sunday” to serving 17 terms representing an Atlanta-area district in Congress.

“A lifetime of struggle for civil rights. A lifetime of getting into ‘good trouble’, of fighting for a world that is more just. A true hero,” tweeted French President Emmanual Macron.

David Lammy, a member of the United Kingdom Parliament, said he was “saddened” by Lewis’s death, and called him a “titan in the struggle for civil rights, equality and freedom.” 

“Learned with great sadness this morning of the passing of John Lewis – an icon of the civil rights movement, a hero and an inspiration to us all. My thoughts are with his family and loved ones,” Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven added. 

Lewis was widely respected across Washington and the globe for his civil rights activism and work in the House, also drawing praise from a number of lawmakers on both sides of the political aisle. 

Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) called Lewis “a titan of the civil rights movement whose goodness, faith and bravery transformed our nation” and a legislator who was “fearless in his pursuit of a more perfect union,” while Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) lauded him as a “pioneering civil rights leader who put his life on the line to fight racism, promote equal rights, and bring our nation into greater alignment with its founding principles.”

Tags Civil rights movement Emmanuel Macron John Lewis John Lewis John Lewis death Mitch McConnell Nancy Pelosi Selma to Montgomery marches

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