World Reacts To Death Of John McCain

Political figures from around the world are paying tribute to John McCain, the Vietnam war hero and veteran US Senator who has died at the age of 81.

Former US president Barack Obama says that his 2008 election rival John McCain shared a view of the United States as "a place where anything is possible - and citizenship as our patriotic obligation to ensure it forever remains that way".

 

Obama and his wife, Michelle, offered "heartfelt condolences" to the McCain family after the death of the US Republican senator and Vietnam war hero, who died on Saturday at the age of 81.

 

Obama said that he and McCain "were members of different generations, came from completely different backgrounds, and competed at the highest level of politics. But we shared, for all our differences, a fidelity to something higher - the ideals for which generations of Americans and immigrants alike have fought, marched, and sacrificed".

 

"Few of us have been tested the way John once was, or required to show the kind of courage that he did. But all of us can aspire to the courage to put the greater good above our own," Obama said.

 

In a post on Twitter, McCain's wife Cindy said she was heartbroken by his death.

"My heart is broken. I am so lucky to have lived the adventure of loving this incredible man for 38 years. He passed the way he lived, on his own terms, surrounded by the people he loved, in the the place he loved best."

Daughter Meghan McCain described her father as a "great fire who burned bright".

"We lived in his light and warmth for so very long. We know that his flame lives on, in each of us. His love and his care, ever present, always unfailing, took me from a girl to a woman - and he showed me what it is to be a man."

 

President Donald Trump tweeted his "deepest sympathies and respect" to the McCain family: "Our hearts and prayers are with you!"

 

The two Republican leaders maintained a strained relationship since Trump questioned his status as a war hero by saying: "I like people who weren't captured".

Trump also frequently criticised McCain for voting against a 2017 plan in the Senate to replace the so-called Obamacare law.

 

Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison also paid tribute to the man he says "was a true friend of Australia, who was committed to strengthening the alliance between our two nations".

 

"He was a man of great courage and conviction. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife, Cindy, and all the McCain family during this time," Mr Morrison tweeted on Sunday.

 

Australia's Ambassador to the US Joe Hockey also paid his respects.

"People who love justice, democracy, freedom and courage will mourn this loss of an American legend."

 

South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, a fellow military officer, tweeted that McCain was "one of my dearest friends and mentor."

"America and Freedom have lost one of her greatest champions," the Republican Graham wrote on Twitter.

 

Democratic National Committee chairman Tom Perez said that McCain "always will be an American hero."

 

"John McCain devoted his life to serving his country," Perez tweeted.

Paul Ryan, Republican speaker of the House of Representatives, said on Friday that McCain "personifies service to our country."

 

With AAP