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DeadBorn: 3/2/1931 in Privolnoye, Russia, USSR
Cause of death: lengthy illness
Full name: Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev
Noted For: last General Secretary of the U.S.S.R. (1985-91); introduced reforms, such making the Soviet government a separate entity from the Communist Party, and allowing Eastern European nations to exercise self-government, that contributed to the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Quotation: "I hereby discontinue my activities at the post of President of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics."
Also see this person's photo entry in our Dead or Alive Data Base.