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Former New Zealand Prime Minister, David Lange Dead at 63


Former New Zealand Prime Minister, David Lange, has died. He was 63.

A family statement released Saturday said Mr. Lange died in an Auckland hospital from complications of renal failure.

David Lange, who led his Labour Party to victory in New Zealand's 1984 election, served as prime minister from 1984 until 1989. At the time, Mr. Lange was his nation's youngest prime minister at the age of 41.

While in office Mr. Lange became widely known for his anti-nuclear policies. In 1985, the Lange government banned nuclear arms and nuclear powered ships from New Zealand's territory and waters. The move chilled relations with the United States that have since been thawed.

Mr. Lange, who had a history of health problems, retired from politics in 1995. In 2002 he was diagnosed with a rare plasma disorder. On July 15 he was admitted to the hospital because of complications from diabetes.

David Lange is survived by his wife and four children.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.

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