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Former Liberal Democrat leader Charles Kennedy died from the effects of alcoholism, his family has confirmed.

The politician, who was 55 when he died at his home earlier this month, suffered a major haemorrhage caused by his alcohol dependence. His death came less than a month after he lost his seat in the House of Commons, which he had held for 32 years, as the SNP swept to victory north of the border.

He was found dead at his Fort William cottage on June 1st by his new partner, Carole MacDonald, who was the widow of his best friend, Murdo MacDonald. Before his death from cancer in 2007 at the age of 49, Mr MacDonald had helped Mr Kennedy to cope with his drinking problem and was the godfather to his ten year old son, Donald.

Tributes poured in from family, friends and colleagues after the announcement of his death. Prime Minister David Cameron described him as a politician with “immense ability” whose death was a “tragic loss”.

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