Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev has died, Russian media report

The world is reacting to the death of Mikhail Gorbachev, the last ever leader of the USSR, who died yesterday at the age of 91.

He is remembered for his efforts to reform the USSR with the policies of glasnost and perestoika, and tributes poured in yesterday for one of the most influential figures of the 20th century.

Many have focused on him receiving the award of the 1990 Nobel Peace Prize for his role in ending the Cold War without bloodshed.

Some, however, are focusing on a different award – his MTV award.

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It might sound bizarre, but back in 2009 Gorbachev was awarded MTV’s Free Your Mind award for his role in the fall of the Berlin wall.

Who knew Gorbachev was a hit with MTV?Getty images

A newly resurfaced clip shows the former Soviet leader being awarded the odd looking prize (shaped like an open brain) at the Bill Roedy at the Cinema for Peace Foundation dinner that year.

The year marked the 20th anniversary of the fall of the wall, with the MTV Free Your Mind campaign aiming to highlight humanitarian issues across the world.

Who knew?

Some learned about the prize for the first time yesterday, with some jokingly referring to it as Gorbachev's finest achievement.

It’s not the only unexpected appearance Gorbachev made in the West following the fall of the wall.

One infamous moment saw him star in a Pizza Hut advert following his disastrous run for president in 1996.

A year after the election, which saw him poll less than one per cent of the vote, he made an ad for Pizza Hut to earn money for his charitable foundation.

His death was announced on Tuesday. “Mikhail Sergeevich Gorbachev died this evening after a serious and long illness,” the Central Clinical Hospital in Moscow said, quoted by Russian news agencies.

Antonio Guterres, secretary general of the United Nations, described Gorbachev as a “towering leader” and former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger telling the BBC he “performed great services” but was “not able to implement all of his visions”.

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