Famed Egyptian actress Ragaa al-Geddawy died on Sunday at the age of 81 after contracting the coronavirus COVID-19 disease, the Actors Union says.
“Ragaa al-Geddawy passed away this morning due to COVID-19,” union head Ashraf Zaki told AFP. “No public funeral was arranged for health reasons.”
Geddawy tested positive for the illness caused by the novel coronavirus in late May and was treated in isolation at a hospital in Ismailia province, some 130 kilometres (80 miles) east of Cairo, local media reported.
She had recently finished filming for her latest TV series “Laabet El Nesyan” (Oblivion Game), which aired during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
A veteran actor, Geddawy boasted a lengthy and varied career during which she gained fame across the Arab world.
Geddawy started out as a model before taking on acting roles from the late 1950s, including her first film “Ghariba” (The Stranger) in 1958.
She went on to act in more than 380 films, plays and television shows alongside some of the biggest names in Egyptian cinema.
Geddawy was also the niece of renowned belly dancer and actor, Taheya Carioca.
Egypt's health ministry has tallied 74,035 COVID-19 cases including 3,280 deaths since recording its first infections.