US Secretary of State said his country joined in mourning the loss of former prime minister Ariel Sharon, and honored his memory.

"Ariel Sharon's journey was Israel’s journey. The dream of Israel was the cause of his life, and he risked it all to live that dream," Kerry said in a statement.

Kerry recalled meeting the "big bear of man" during Sharon's tenure as premier,  and expressed admiration for his "lifelong convictions" in the process for peace.

"In his final years as Prime Minister, he surprised many in his pursuit of peace, and today, we all recognize, as he did, that Israel must be strong to make peace, and that peace will also make Israel stronger. We honor Arik’s legacy and those of Israel’s founding generation by working to achieve that goal," he added.

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