London, Apr 8 : Britain's first and only woman Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, referred to as Iron Lady, today died of a stroke here at the age of 87, leaving an iconic stamp on world politics as one of most influential figures in the 20th century.
The tough and outspoken Thatcher, a global champion of free market economic revival, is survived by her twin children Carol and Mark Thatcher.
"It is with great sadness that Mark and Carol Thatcher announced that their mother Baroness Thatcher died peacefully following a stroke this morning," Lord Bell, her spokesman said.
Thatcher had a lasting impact on post-war British politics and beyond. And she was both loved and hated.
Ironically, the 87-year-old Conserative leader once predicted there would never be a woman Prime Minister in her lifetime, and yet she proved more single-minded and determined than any of her male rivals.
Some say Thatcher, who used her handbag as a prop to underline her swagger and power, was the best thing to have ever happened to Great Britain. For others, she was the closest thing this country has come to being ruled by a dictator.
Born Margaret Roberts on October 13 1925, she was also considered the most divisive prime minister of the century, earning both great reverence but also deep hatred from the divided public, particularly for her treatment of trade unions.
Whatever be the views, analysts said there's no denying the fact that Thatcher during her Downing Street years transformed the nation as she smashed decades of political consensus and went to war with the Labour opposition, the unions, the Argentine army and the European Union.