Benjamin Netanyahu
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Netanyahu: The state of Israel bows its head at Sharon's passing

Israelis are beginning a short period of mourning for ex-Prime Minister Ariel Sharon who has died aged 85 of heart failure after eight years in a coma.

The public will pay their respects when his body lies in state on Sunday before a private burial on Monday.

Israeli and world figures have paid tribute to a man who fought in four major wars before taking to the political stage.

Israel's Prime Minister, Benjamin Natanyahu, paid tribute to ''a courageous fighter and an outstanding general''.

Go to next video: Israel's former PM Ariel Sharon dies