Lusaka - Zambian president Levy Mwanawasa died Tuesday morning in a Paris hospital after suffering a stroke in June, a family member said.
"Yes, I can confirm that the president passed on this morning," said the family member, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
The Zambian cabinet had been summoned Tuesday to "an urgent meeting", said a cabinet minister who did not want to be named.
Mwanawasa, hospitalised in France after suffering a stroke in June, had required urgent surgery Monday after a rapid deterioration in his health, Vice-President Rupiah Banda said.
"The team of doctors have reported that the intervention was successful but described the condition of His Excellency the President as serious," Banda said, citing a sudden downturn in Mwanawasa's health on Sunday.
The 59-year-old suffered a stroke in Egypt on June 29, on the eve of an African Union summit. It was his second stroke in just over two years. He was airlifted to France after initially being treated in Cairo.
Health Minister Brian Chituwo told Zambia's parliament earlier this month that Mwanawasa would likely remain in the intensive care unit at the Percy Military Hospital near Paris for some time.
"Let us clearly remember that by the serious nature of our Republican president's illness, the healing process will indeed be long," Chituwo told MPs.