Donald Tusk
Polish politician
Donald Tusk
Donald Franciszek Tusk is a Polish politician who has been Prime Minister of Poland since 2007. He was a co-founder and is chairman of the Civic Platform (Platforma Obywatelska) party. Tusk was officially designated as Prime Minister on 9 November 2007 and took office on 16 November. His cabinet won a vote of confidence in the Sejm on 24 November 2007. He is currently the longest serving prime minister of the Third Republic of Poland.
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EU's Tusk questioned for hours in Polish investigation
ABC News - 5 days
European Council President Donald Tusk spent more than eight hours behind closed doors being questioned by Polish prosecutors, emerging from the proceedings to say the case in which he appeared as a witness is of a "highly political character"
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ABC News article
EU offers Brexit trade talks, sets tough terms - 24 days
Talks between the European Union and Britain to negotiate the country's exit will be difficult and sometimes confrontational, EU Council President Donald Tusk said on Friday, adding that there would be no parallel talks on issues outside of that. Scarlett Cvitanovich reports.
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One of the biggest breakups in history gets underway as Britain files to leave European Union
LATimes - 25 days
It has been described as the most complex divorce in history, but Wednesday afternoon, the breakup began in earnest as Britain formally launched its move to leave the European Union. Donald Tusk, president of the European Council, received a letter in Brussels hand-delivered by Sir Tim Barrow,...
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LATimes article
EU Leaders to Hold Special Brexit Summit in Late April
Wall Street Journal - about 1 month
European Council President Donald Tusk has asked European Union leaders, excluding British Prime Minister Theresa May, to meet on April 29 to discuss Brexit.
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Wall Street Journal article
Brexit Has An Official Start Date
Huffington Post - about 1 month
function onPlayerReadyVidible(e){'undefined'!=typeof HPTrack&&HPTrack.Vid.Vidible_track(e)}!function(e,i){if(e.vdb_Player){if('object'==typeof commercial_video){var a='',o='m.fwsitesection='+commercial_video.site_and_category;if(a+=o,commercial_video['package']){var c='&m.fwkeyvalues=sponsorship%3D'+commercial_video['package'];a+=c}e.setAttribute('vdb_params',a)}i(e.vdb_Player)}else{var t=arguments.callee;setTimeout(function(){t(e,i)},0)}}(document.getElementById('vidible_1'),onPlayerReadyVidible); By William James, Elizabeth Piper and Gabriela Baczynska LONDON/BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Prime Minister Theresa May will trigger Britain’s divorce proceedings with the European Union on March 29, launching two years of negotiations that will reshape the future of the country and Europe. May’s government said her permanent envoy to the EU had informed European Council President Donald Tusk of the date when Britain intends to invoke Article 50 of its Lisbon T ...
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Huffington Post article
EU's Tusk warns 'no deal' Brexit would hit Britain hardest - about 1 month
BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Council President Donald Tusk dismissed suggestions that Britain would rather leave the European Union without a deal than sign an unsatisfactory one as "increasing threats".
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EU slaps down Poland, reappoints Tusk - about 1 month
The leaders of the European Union delivered a withering snub to Poland's right-wing government on Thursday by disregarding its objections and reappointing former Polish premier Donald Tusk to chair their summits.
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Donald Tusk keeps top EU job despite objection from his own country
Fox News - about 2 months
EU leaders have confirmed Donald Tusk for another term as European Council president, despite attempts by Poland to block him.
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Fox News article
Countdown to Brexit - Daily Mail
Google News - about 2 months Countdown to Brexit Daily Mail BRUSSELS, March 5 (Reuters) - Prime Minister Theresa May will write to European Council President Donald Tusk this month to trigger Britain's withdrawal from the European Union under Article 50 of the EU treaty. It should be out within two years. Here ... Ministers urged to protect rights of EU citizens in UKBBC News EU nationals in UK should have future rights guaranteed, MPs sayAberdeen Evening Express Theresa May must guarantee rights of EU citizens to remain in UK, MPs sayEvening Standard LBC -Eagle Radio -Business Insider all 135 news articles »
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Google News article
Making America A Pariah Again
Huffington Post - 2 months
  Donald Trump is holding up the severed head of the Statue of Liberty. It’s a striking image for a magazine cover. But it’s not the front of the Nation or the ACLU newsletter. It’s this week’s issue of Der Spiegel, Germany’s version of Time magazine. To punctuate the point, one of Spiegel’s articles declares Donald Trump “the world’s most dangerous man.” Der Spiegel is channeling a widespread European sentiment. It took only a couple weeks for the Trump administration to make transatlantic relations so toxic that Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council, felt the need to slap an orange alert on the orange-haired president. The new administration has seemingly “put into question the last 70 years of American foreign policy,” Tusk wrote in a letter read round the world. In his urgent missive, Tusk identifies the United States as an external threat to Europe comparable to Russia or the Islamic State. Because Brussels can no longer depend on Washington, Tusk’s lett ...
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Huffington Post article
Is Museum of the Second World War not patriotic enough?
Huffington Post - 3 months
Although not yet officially open to the visitors, the new Museum of the Second World War in Gdansk has already become a bone of contention between the residents with their local authorities and the central government in Warsaw. The city of Gdansk with its traditions of freedom and solidarity can't stand idly when the members of the ruling Law and Justice party want to take control over the museum, and to change its content. Part of the exhibition in the museum. In December 2007 Poland's prime minister, Donald Tusk, now president of the European Council, presented the idea of creating a museum that would show Poland's tragic history in 1939-45 against a broad European background. It was to be located in Gdansk - the city where the war broke out in 1939. "It is not true that historians know all about the Second World War. It is not true that all the questions about that era have been answered. Most people are unaware of historians' ideas... We not only need works of synthesis a ...
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Huffington Post article
Tale of Two Donalds: Trump gives Europe splitting headache
Yahoo News - 3 months
European Union leaders meeting in Malta found themselves taking sides, between their summit chairman, "our Donald" Tusk, and the new U.S. president, Donald Trump. Tusk, a former Polish prime minister, said EU leaders gave him the "our Donald" nickname in Malta. "The mood in the room was 'our Donald' and 'the other Donald'," said one person present at the talks, where Tusk also felt confident enough in his support to confirm he wants a second term as president of the European Council.
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Yahoo News article
EU's Tusk calls on Europe to rally against Trump threat
Yahoo News - 3 months
European Council President Donald Tusk said on Tuesday that U.S. President Donald Trump has joined Russia, China and radical Islam among threats to Europe and called on Europeans to stick together to avoid domination by three other continental powers. In a letter to national leaders before a summit that he will chair in Malta on Friday to prepare the Union's future after Britain leaves, the conservative former Polish prime minister said Trump's more protectionist trade policy offered the EU a chance and it should do more now to set up free trade deals. Saying the EU faces its biggest challenges in its 60-year history, Tusk said an "assertive China", "Russia's aggressive policy" toward its neighbors, "radical Islam" fuelling anarchy in the Middle East and Africa were key external threats.
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Yahoo News article
EU leaders welcome May speech but urge caution - The Guardian
Google News - 3 months
The Guardian EU leaders welcome May speech but urge caution The Guardian The president of the European council, Donald Tusk, welcomed May's speech as 'realistic'. Photograph: Stephanie Lecocq/EPA. Philip Oltermann in Berlin Jennifer Rankin in Brussels, Stephanie Kirchgaessner in Rome and Christian Davies in Warsaw. Brexit: Business and industry react to May's speechBBC News The Latest: EU leader calls May's Brexit speech "realistic"Daily Mail Brexit: UK will leave EU whether Parliament backs Theresa May's deal or notBelfast Telegraph Sky News -Manchester Evening News all 2,808 news articles »
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Google News article
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Donald Tusk
  • 2015
    Age 58
    29 September 2015 – President of the European Council Donald Tusk addressed the United Nations General Assembly during general debates, attended other events both within the UN and beyond, met with various world leaders.
    More Details Hide Details After being elected prime minister, relations between Tusk and President Lech Kaczyński were often acrimonious due to different political ideologies and the constitutional role of the presidency. Using presidential veto powers, Kaczyński blocked legislation drafted by the Tusk government, including pension reform, agricultural and urban zoning plans, and restructuring state television. Tusk and Kaczyński repeatedly sparred over issues ranging from European integration, homosexuality, foreign policy, to constitutional issues, with Tusk taking more socially liberal opinions than the conservative Kaczyński.
  • 2014
    Age 57
    Upon acceding to his position as President of the European Council, Tusk, while being fluent in German, was criticized for his poor English skills and no knowledge of French. Other sources however argue that he is "quite good" in English, which was also publicly demonstrated during the EU summit in Brussels on 19 December 2014.
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    Tusk succeeded Herman Van Rompuy as President of the European Council on 1 December 2014.
    More Details Hide Details His candidacy for the position, to which he was initially resistant, received strong support from a number of high-profile European leaders, particularly German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Since assuming office, Tusk has notably worked to promote a unified European response to Russia's military intervention in Ukraine.
    At the beginning of his term as prime minister, he inherited an economy of $425 billion, as of 2014 this had expanded to $856 billion and has always exceeded all forecasts.
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    On 30 August 2014, it was announced at an EU Council meeting that Tusk would be the next President of the European Council.
    More Details Hide Details On 9 September, Tusk submitted his resignation as Prime Minister. He was the longest-serving Prime Minister of the Third Polish Republic. Tusk was born in Gdańsk in northern Poland. His father, also named Donald Tusk (1930–1972), was a carpenter, and his mother, Ewa (née Dawidowska) Tusk (1934–2009), was a nurse. His uncle, Bronisław Tusk (1935–2000), was a sculptor from Gdańsk. His grandfather Józef Tusk (1907–1987) was a railway official who was imprisoned at the Neuengamme concentration camp; later, as a former citizen of the Free City of Danzig, he was apparently conscripted by German authorities into the Wehrmacht. His grandfather's membership of the Wehrmacht was later used against Tusk in the 2005 election campaign. Tusk got his Scottish first name because his paternal grandmother Juliana travelled abroad in her youth and became enamoured of a lord called Donald. She gave this name to her son, who passed it on to her grandson.
  • 2013
    Age 56
    In February 2013, he received the Gold Medal award of the Fondation du Mérite européen from Jean-Claude Juncker for his efforts to overcome domestic skeptics especially of the then anti-EU Polish president, and to promote a more pro-EU agenda by the Polish Government.
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  • 2012
    Age 55
    In May 2012, he, moreover, received the Walther-Rathenau-Preis "in recognition for his commitment to European integration during Poland's presidency of the EU Council in the second half of 2011 and for fostering Polish-German dialogue".
    More Details Hide Details In her speech German chancellor Angela Merkel praised Tusk as "a farsighted European".
    The construction of a more adequate and larger national road network in preparation for the UEFA 2012 football championships has been a stated priority for the Tusk government.
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  • 2011
    Age 54
    In October 2011, Tusk's Civic Platform won a plurality of seats in the Polish parliamentary election, meaning that Tusk became the first Prime Minister to be re-elected since the fall of Communism in Poland.
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    Between July and December 2011, Poland under Tusk's government presided over the Presidency of the Council of the European Union. Under its presidency tenure, Poland supported and welcomed Croatia's entry into the European Union through the Treaty of Accession 2011.
    More Details Hide Details While being a constituent member of the Weimar Triangle with fellow states Germany and France, Tusk showed displeasure over German Chancellor Angela Merkel's and French President Nicolas Sarkozy's dominating roles in eurozone negotiations, remarking to Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera in January 2012 that "this should not translate into a lasting political monopoly: things cannot be left to only two capitals of Europe." While supporting Franco-German efforts to solve the crisis, Tusk believed the effort should be continental-wide, with EU states using their own initiatives. In foreign policy, Tusk has sought to improve relations severely damaged during the previous Kaczyński government, particularly with Germany and Russia. While criticizing the words of German politician Erika Steinbach with regard to her opinion over the expulsion of Germans from Poland following World War II, Tusk has stressed the need for warm relations with Berlin. Tusk also advocated a more realistic relationship with Moscow, especially in regard to energy policy. Under Tusk's premiership, Russian bans on Polish meat and agricultural products have been lifted, while Poland reversed its official policy of disagreement on a European Union-Russian partnership agreement.
  • 2010
    Age 53
    Tusk again reiterated his desire for constitutional reform in February 2010, proposing that the presidential veto be overridden by a simple parliamentary majority rather than through a three-fifths vote. "Presidential veto could not effectively block the will of the majority in parliament, which won elections and formed the government", stated Tusk.
    More Details Hide Details Further constitutional reforms proposed by Tusk include reducing the Sejm from a membership of 460 to 300, "not only because of its savings, but also the excessive number of members' causes blurring certain plans and projects". Similarly, Tusk proposed radical changes to the Senate, preferring to abolish the upper house altogether, yet due to constitutional concerns and demands from the junior coalition Polish People's Party partner, Tusk proposed reducing the Senate from 100 to 49, while including former presidents to sit in the Senate for political experience and expertise in state matters. Parliamentary immunity for all members of the Sejm and Senate would also be stripped, except for in special situations. In addition, Tusk proposed that the prime minister's role in foreign policy decisions would be greatly expanded. By decreasing the president's role in governance, executive power would further be concentrated in the prime minister, directly responsible to the cabinet and Sejm, as well as avoiding confusion over Poland's representation at international or EU summits. The opposition conservative Law and Justice party deeply criticized Tusk's constitutional reform proposals, opting in opposing legislation for the presidency to garner greater power over the prime minister.
    He dedicated the prize to the people killed in a plane crash of a Polish Air Force Tu-154 in April 2010 including the Polish president Lech Kaczyński.
    More Details Hide Details The eulogy was given by German chancellor Angela Merkel. He was also awarded an Economy Raspberry Award (similar to the Golden Raspberry Award in movies) by the Puls Biznesu ("Business' Pulse") and organizacja Pracodawców RP (Polish Employers Confederation) awarded to the persons who had negative influence in Polish economy, destroyed entrepreneurship and damaged quality standards of capital market.
    The Charlemagne Prize of the city of Aachen was awarded to Tusk on 13 May 2010 for his merits in the further unification of Europe and for his role as a "patriot and great European".
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    In an interview with the Financial Times in January 2010, Tusk was asked if he considered running again as Civic Platform's candidate for that year's presidential election.
    More Details Hide Details Tusk replied that although the presidential election typically drew the most voters to the polls and remained Poland's most high-profiled race, the presidency had little political power outside of the veto, and preferred to remain as prime minister. While not formally excluding his candidacy, Tusk declared that "I would very much like to continue to work in the government and Civic Platform, because that seems to me to be the key element in ensuring success in the civilisational race in which we are engaged". A day after the interview, Tusk formally announced his intention of staying as prime minister, allowing his party to choose another candidate (and eventual winner), Bronisław Komorowski.
  • 2009
    Age 52
    In his premiership, Tusk has proposed various reforms to the Polish constitution. In 2009, Tusk proposed changes to the power of the presidency, by abolishing the presidential veto. "The president should not have veto power.
    More Details Hide Details People make their decision in elections and then state institutions should not be in conflict", said Tusk.
    During the 2009 swine flu pandemic, Tusk defended his government's decision not to purchase swine flu vaccine, citing the lack of testing by pharmaceutical companies and its unavailability to be purchased freely through the market.
    More Details Hide Details Tusk criticized other nations' responses to the pandemic. "The eagerness of some countries seems to be excessive and disproportionate to the real epidemiological situation", Tusk stated, referring to the pandemic's relatively low fatality rate. The government's decision drew harsh responses from opposition members in the Sejm. Donald Tusk is moderately conservative on social issues. He is opposed to legalizing abortion on demand, believing that Poland's current legislation on abortion (which allows for legal abortion only when the pregnancy threatens the mother's life or health, when the fetus is seriously malformed, and when the pregnancy results from rape or incest) protects human life best. Tusk has publicly stated that he opposes euthanasia and the legalization of marijuana. In continental policy, Tusk has strongly supported greater political and economic integration within the European Union, strongly backing the implementation of the Lisbon Treaty, standing in stark contrast to President Lech Kaczyński's vehement opposition. Tusk repeatedly stated his government's intention in bringing Poland into the Eurozone. Originally wanting to introduce the euro by 2012, Tusk envisioned in 2009 a starting year of 2015 as "a realistic and not overly-ambitious goal." However, during the European sovereign debt crisis, Tusk and his government displayed less optimism in joining the monetary union under contemporary economic circumstances, leading to Finance Minister Jan Vincent-Rostowski calling any move "unthinkable." Despite not being a member of the eurozone, Tusk pressed that Poland, along with the other non-eurozone states of the EU, should be included in future euro financial negotiations.
    On 27 October 2009, Tusk declared that he wants to partially outlaw gambling.
    More Details Hide Details There are some concerns on Internet censorship, as Tusk wants to ban Internet gambling and monitor Internet connections and money transfers.
  • 2008
    Age 51
    The country has not contracted, even despite the 2008 financial crisis during his term.
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  • 2007
    Age 50
    In the 2007 parliamentary election campaign and at an early stage of his rule Tusk promised to continue the free-market policies, streamline the bureaucracy, enact long-term stable governance, cut taxes to attract greater foreign business ventures, lure foreign-working Poles back to Poland, and privatize state-owned companies.
    More Details Hide Details Later on in his rule, Tusk changed his views on the role of taxation in the functioning of the state and his government has never cut any taxes. Instead, it raised the value-added tax from 22% to 23% in 2011 and has increased the excise imposed on diesel oil, alcoholic beverages, tobacco and coal as well as eliminated many tax exemptions. The number of people employed in the public administration has also grown considerably. As of 2012, the value of foreign investments in Poland had never reached its heights from 2006–2007, before the Tusk's take-over. The number of Poles staying abroad in 2013 was almost the same as in 2007.
    Tusk and his Civic Platform party emerged victorious in the 2007 parliamentary election, defeating incumbent Prime Minister Jarosław Kaczyński's Law and Justice party.
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    Tusk was officially designated as Prime Minister on 9 November 2007 and took office on 16 November.
    More Details Hide Details His cabinet won a vote of confidence in the Sejm on 24 November 2007.
  • 2005
    Age 48
    Polish presidential election, 2005
    More Details Hide Details Prime Minister of Poland (vote of confidence) 2007 2011 2012 2014 Donald Tusk and his wife, Małgorzata, have two children: a son, Michał (born 1982) and a daughter, Katarzyna (born 1987). He also has one grandson, Mikołaj (born 2009) by his son Michał. Tusk's family belongs to the Kashubian minority in Poland. They reside in Sopot near Gdańsk.
    On 9 November, President Lech Kaczyński, who had defeated Tusk in 2005's presidential election, asked Tusk to form a government.
    More Details Hide Details Tusk and his assembled cabinet were sworn in on 16 November, becoming the fourteenth prime minister of the Third Republic. Tusk and his newly assembled cabinet survived a vote of confidence in the Sejm several days later on 24 November. In the 2011 parliamentary election, Civic Platform retained its place as Poland's most popular party.
    Tusk was the party's official candidate for the 2005 presidential election.
    More Details Hide Details He was defeated in the second round by a margin of 46:54 by Lech Kaczyński. He represented the constituencies of Gdynia-Słupsk (2001–2005) and Gdańsk (2005–2007). Since 2007 he has been an MP for Warsaw. Tusk's political position emphasizes strong support for a free market economy with minimal government interference and cooperative relationships with other EU members.
  • 2003
    Age 46
    While Płażyński was founding chairman of the party, Tusk took over in 2003, and has been leader ever since. (The Freedom Union party won no seats.
    More Details Hide Details It later changed its name to the Democratic Party.)
  • 2001
    Age 44
    In the run-up to the 2001 elections, Tusk lost a leadership campaign in the UW party to Bronisław Geremek.
    More Details Hide Details With the party in disarray and the previous parliament's AWS/Solidarity coalition breaking apart, Tusk, Andrzej Olechowski, and Maciej Płażyński founded Civic Platform (PO), taking many party members with him. The party would win 65 seats in that year's election, becoming the largest single opposition party. Tusk became deputy speaker of the Sejm.
  • 1997
    Age 40
    Tusk was elected to the Senate in the next election in 1997, with his UW party supporting the Solidarity (AWS) government of Jerzy Buzek.
    More Details Hide Details He served as deputy speaker of the Senate in that term.
    Tusk lost his seat as well and would be out of Parliament until 1997.
    More Details Hide Details In 1994, the KLD merged with the Democratic Union (Unia Demokratyczna) to become the Freedom Union (Unia Wolności, UW). Tusk became vice-chairman of the new party.
  • 1992
    Age 35
    Tusk did not enter the government, and was involved in the so-called "Nocna Zmiana" ("Night Shift") change of government during the night of 4–5 June 1992.KLD stayed in opposition until Hanna Suchocka became prime minister in 1992.
    More Details Hide Details Suchocka's government quickly became unpopular, and KLD's popularity fell with it. In the 1993 elections, the party received only 4%, under the threshold and keeping it out of the Sejm for the next term.
  • 1991
    Age 34
    Tusk was one of the founders of the Liberal Democratic Congress (Kongres Liberalno-Demokratyczny KLD), and became its president in 1991.
    More Details Hide Details In this party – which backed free markets, European integration, and privatization of state industry. In the 1991 elections, the KLD won 8% of the vote and 37 seats in the Sejm with the slogan, "Neither the right nor the left, just straight to Europe." Tusk was one of the candidates, making him a member of the First Sejm of the Third Polish Republic. Conservative parties formed a loose coalition in the Sejm, and Jan Olszewski became prime minister.
  • 1980
    Age 23
    This positioned him at the forefront of student politics in 1980, and he was influential in founding the Independent Students Union (NZS), the Solidarity affiliate, that year.
    More Details Hide Details He became a journalist, involved with pro-Solidarity organs like Samorzadnosc, as well as Kashubian publications. He collaborated with the Free Trade Unions of the Coastal Region as well as Kashubian leader Lech Bądkowski. Tusk's activities blacklisted him from employment at state-operated firms under the Communist government, so Tusk spent seven years working at the Swietlik co-operative.
    He then enrolled as a student of history at the University of Gdańsk, from which he graduated in 1980 under professor Roman Wapiński with an M.A. thesis on Józef Piłsudski.
    More Details Hide Details Tusk also speaks German and English. At the beginning of the Solidarity era, Tusk was involved in student politics in Gdańsk. He helped found the Solidarity Student Committee at the university, and later the local Independent Students Association.
  • 1976
    Age 19
    Tusk graduated from Nicolaus Copernicus High School No. 1 in Gdańsk in 1976.
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  • 1957
    Age 0
    Born on April 22, 1957.
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