Iraqi President Talabani 'in Coma after Stroke'

World | December 18, 2012, Tuesday // 19:58|  views

Jalal Talabani is Iraq's first Kurdish president. Photo by Getty Images

Iraqi President Jalal Talabani is said to be in a coma in hospital after officials and media reported he had suffered a stroke, according to BBC.

A statement on his website said President Talabani was in a stable condition and was being treated for blocked arteries.

Well-placed Kurdish sources however told BBC he remains in a coma.

A veteran of the Kurdish guerrilla movement, Talabani, 79, is Iraq's first president from the ethnic group.

He has struggled with his health in recent years and has often been treated abroad.

"Bodily functions are normal and the health condition of his excellency the president is stable," a statement on the presidency's website said.

The presidency said in an earlier statement that Talabani's efforts to forge a consensus in Iraq and the "consequent fatigue and tiredness" had led to a "health emergency" that led to him being admitted to hospital on Monday evening.

Soldiers assigned to the presidential guard were deployed around Medical City, Baghdad's largest medical complex where Talabani is being treated.

He took over the mainly ceremonial presidency in the years after the 2003 invasion, and has often used the position to mediate between sectarian and ethnic groups.

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Tags: Baghdad, Iraqi, president, Jalal Talabani, stroke


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