Former US President Jimmy Carter wants to spend the remaining time at home with his family after a series of hospital stays. The 98-year-old has opted for palliative care at home instead of further medical steps, said the foundation he founded. "He has the full support of his family and medical team," it said. At the same time, the Carter Center asked that privacy be respected.
The Democratic politician from the southern state of Georgia was President of the United States from 1977 to 1981, when he was succeeded by Republican Ronald Reagan. He is the oldest living former president. His successors Reagan and George Bush died in 2004 and 2018 respectively. In 2002 Carter received the Nobel Peace Prize for his international services. He has been married to his wife Rosalynn (95) for 76 years.
state of health has deteriorated
Carter's health has deteriorated in recent months, the Washington Post and other US media reported. He now uses a wheelchair and his wife needs a walking aid. Grandson Jason Carter tweeted: "I saw both of my grandparents yesterday. They are at peace and - as always - their house is full of love." He now heads the board of directors of the foundation.
Jimmy Carter announced in 2015 that he had liver cancer. Melanomas were also discovered in his brain. A year later he announced that he had overcome the disease. In November 2019, the former peanut farmer made it clear at a church service in his hometown of Plains that he faces death with serenity. "I didn't ask God to let me live," he said. "I asked God to give me an appropriate attitude towards death."
In the past few weeks, Carter has asked for trips around his birthplace, Plains, US media reported. For his 98th birthday almost five months ago, the small town organized a parade for him. A week earlier, Carter and his wife were driven through the streets in a red convertible to celebrate the annual Peanut Festival.
Biden: Admiration for Carter
Today's President Joe Biden, who has repeatedly expressed his admiration for Carter, has been informed of his party colleague's state of health. The 80-year-old - also from the Democrats - is in close contact with the family, the broadcaster CNN reported.
Carter was the 39th President of the United States, but only for one term. He lost the 1980 presidential election to Reagan. His reign was overshadowed above all by the kidnapping of diplomats in the US embassy in Tehran in 1979 and the unsuccessful liberation operation the following year. In 1982 he and his wife founded the Carter Center for the Advancement of Democracy, Human Rights and Economic Development in Atlanta.
In 2002 he received the Nobel Peace Prize for his worldwide commitment to conflict resolution. Carter also repeatedly interfered in US politics. Contrary to custom, he also criticized subsequent presidents - most recently Republican Donald Trump.