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Legendary US TV personality, Larry King dies at 87

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Veteran broadcaster Larry King, who made his name at CNN, has died at the age 87, the US network reported on Saturday.

No cause of death was given, but King had been in hospital in Los Angeles after testing positive for coronavirus.

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The chat show host became a global household name with CNN, interviewing world leaders, politicians and celebrities between 1985 and 2010.

King, whose career spanned over 60 years, won multiple accolades, including two Peabody Awards and an Emmy.

He had faced several health problems in recent years, including diabetes and heart attacks.

The journalist first rose to fame in the 1970s with his radio program The Larry King Show.

He also appeared as a columnist for the USA Today newspaper.

His TV show was canceled in 2010 and he was replaced by British broadcaster Piers Morgan, who hailed King as a “hero” on social media.

After leaving CNN, King fronted shows for the Hulu on-demand service and RT, Russia’s state-controlled international broadcaster.

Russian President Vladimir Putin was also one of those who offered his condolences.

“King repeatedly interviewed Putin. The president has always appreciated his great professionalism and unquestioned journalistic authority,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov was quoted as saying by state RIA Novosti news agency.

But even in his heyday, critics said King did little research before interviews and often tossed softball questions to his guests who were free to give unchallenged self-promoting answers.

“My duty, as I see it, is I’m a conduit,” King told the Hartford Courant in 2007. “I ask the best questions I can. I listen to the answers. I try to follow up.”

“I’m not there to make a conclusion. I’m not a soapbox talk-show host. So what I try to do is present someone in the best light.”

(AP, Reuters)

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