Page last updated at 19:16 GMT, Thursday, 5 February 2009

Top US judge Ginsburg has cancer

Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Ruth Bader Ginsburg was appointed by Bill Clinton in 1993

US Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is receiving treatment for pancreatic cancer, the court says.

It says the 75-year-old justice had surgery in New York and is expected to remain in hospital for up to 10 days.

The Supreme Court said her illness appeared to be in its early stages. Pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest forms of cancers.

Ms Ginsburg has been a justice since 1993 and is one of the more liberal of the nine judges on the Supreme Court.

If she were to stand down, it would give President Barack Obama the chance to name his first Supreme Court justice.

Ms Ginsburg has previously said she has no intention of leaving the court any time soon.

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