Hans van Mierlo
Dutch politicianDied when: 78 years 205 days (942 months)
Star Sign: Leo
Henricus Antonius Franciscus Maria Oliva "Hans" van Mierlo (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈɦɑns fɑˈmiːrloː]; 18 August 1931 – 11 March 2010) was a Dutch politician and co-founder of the Democrats 66 (D66) party and journalist.
Van Mierlo studied Law at the Radboud University Nijmegen obtaining a Master of Laws degree and worked as a journalist and editor for the Algemeen Handelsblad from August 1960 until January 1967.
In October 1966 Van Mierlo was one of the co-founders of the Democrats 66 (D'66) party and became its first Leader and Lijsttrekker (top candidate) for the election of 1967.
Van Mierlo was elected as a Member of the House of Representatives and became Parliamentary leader after the election on 23 February 1967.
For the elections of 1971 and 1972 Van Mierlo served again as Lijsttrekker.On 1 September 1973 Van Mierlo unexpectedly announced he was stepping down as Leader and Parliamentary leader and that he wouldn't stand for the election of 1977 but would continue to serve in the House of Representatives as a frontbencher until the end of the parliamentary term.
Van Mierlo semi-retired from active politics and became active in the public sector as a non-profit director, and worked as a television producer for the VARA from January 1980 until September 1981.
After the election of 1981 Van Mierlo was appointed as Minister of Defence in the Cabinet Van Agt II taking office on 11 September 1981.
The Cabinet Van Agt II fell just seven months into its term on 12 May 1982 and was replaced by the caretaker Cabinet Van Agt III with Van Mierlo continuing his position and shortly thereafter announced that he wouldn't not stand for the election of 1982.
Van Mierlo continued to be active in politics and was elected as a Member of the Senate after the Senate election of 1983 on 13 September 1983 serving as a frontbencher and spokesperson for Foreign Affairs.
For the election of 1986 Van Mierlo again served as Lijsttrekker and returned as a Member of the House of Representatives and Parliamentary leader on 3 June 1986.
For the elections of 1989 and 1994 Van Mierlo once again served as Lijsttrekker and following a successful cabinet formation with Labour Leader Wim Kok and Liberal Leader Frits Bolkestein formed the Cabinet Kok I with Van Mierlo appointed as Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs taking office on 22 August 1994.
In March 1997 Van Mierlo announced that he was stepping down as Leader a second time but that he would stand for the election of 1998.
After a cabinet formation Van Mierlo was asked to continue to serve in the new cabinet in a different function but declined and returned to the House of Representatives on 19 May 1998.
Shortly after the installation of the Cabinet Kok II Van Mierlo announced his retirement and resigned from the House of Representatives on 18 August 1998.
Van Mierlo retired from active politics at 67 and again became active in the public sector as a non-profit director and served as a diplomat for several economic and diplomatic delegations on behalf of the government, and continued to be active as a advocate and lobbyist for more European integration, republican issues and government reforms.
Van Mierlo was known for his abilities as a skillful debater and effective negotiator.Van Mierlo was granted the honorary title of Minister of State on 24 October 1998 and continued to comment on political affairs as a statesman until his death in March 2010 from the complications of a Hepatitis C infection at the age of 78.