PEKING — Marshal Ye Jianying, one of the heroes of China's war against Japan in the 1930s and a top military and political leader, died today at the age of 90, the New China News Agency said.
Ye acted as head of state for five years up to 1983.
The agency gave no details on the cause of death.
Ye, a towering figure of modern China for decades, had been in failing health for 10 years and was believed by Western diplomats to have sunk into a coma last year.
A brilliant military strategist, Ye played a key role in the 1934-1935 Long March and was later liaison officer among the Communist, Nationalist and U.S. forces fighting Japan.