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Egypt's Hosni Mubarak arrives home after surgery

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Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak is 81, and has been in power for 29 years

President Hosni Mubarak has returned to Egypt after surgery in Germany to remove his gall bladder and a growth from his small intestine.

Egyptian TV carried a live broadcast of his arrival in Sharm el-Sheikh where government officials and military leaders were on hand to greet him.

Mr Mubarak, 81, had been recuperating in Germany following the operation at Heidelberg University Hospital.

His chief doctor there said he had "fully recovered".

"I have recommended however that the president continues his convalescence back home during the coming two weeks before he gradually returns to full and normal activity," Markus Buechler added in his statement.

Government-run mosques across Egypt have offered prayers for Mr Mubarak's recovery.

Taboo subject

Correspondents say the president's health is usually a taboo subject in Egypt, and a cause of political and economic uncertainty because he has no obvious successor.

When he left for Germany, the president temporarily handed over power to his Prime Minister, Ahmed Nazif.

Mr Mubarak has been in power for 29 years and his fifth six-year term ends in 2011.

In 2004, he underwent back surgery in Germany and handed over temporarily to then Prime Minister Atef Obeid.

In 2003, he collapsed during a televised speech in parliament, apparently from a bout of flu.



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24 Nov 03 |  Africa
Country profile: Egypt
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