Europe's oldest person dies in Spain aged 116

Ana pictured earlier this year. Ana pictured earlier this year. Antonio Herrera/Twitter

EUROPE'S oldest person has died in Spain weeks after celebrating her 116th birthday.

Ana Vela, who moved to Barcelona from Puente Genil in Cordboba during the 1940s, passed away in her sleep at a retirement home in the Catalan city.

The great grandmother outlasted two of her four children and was living with her 90-year-old daughter at the La Verneda residence.

She became the oldest woman in Europe when 117-year-old Italian Emma Morano died in April this year, and turned 116 on October 29.

Despite being wheelchair-bound and suffering from dementia, staff at the home described her as being "strong as ever" prior to her death.

Her daughter last year told Spanish media: "She likes a glass of semi-sweet wine with her meal but doesn't drink a lot.

"When it comes to food, she eats everything, meat, fish, vegetables. She has a very normal diet."

It comes as the world's oldest man, Francisco Nuñez Oliveira from Extremadura, last week celebrated his 113th birthday.

Ana is succeeded as Europe's oldest woman by 114-year-old Italian Maria Guiseppa Robucci, while Japanese pair Nabi Tajima, 117, and Chiyo Miyako, 116, remain the two oldest women on the planet.

Matt Ford

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