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Denmark-born head of UN health agency dies at 93

December 15, 2016

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — The United Nations’ health agency says its former director Halfdan T. Mahler has died. He was 93.

The World Health Organization said Thursday that Mahler died Wednesday. He headed the agency’s Tuberculosis Unit in Geneva, Switzerland and served as its director-general from 1973 until 1988.

Born in a western Denmark village, Mahler began his career with the World Health Organization with the National Tuberculosis Program in India. He later took over the Tuberculosis Unit in Geneva and eventually became deputy director-general.

In 2009, he became an honorary alumnus of the University of Copenhagen, from where he graduated in 1948.