Mubarak cancels major appearance

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

CAIRO Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak has canceled another major appearance amid increasing fears of his health.

Mubarak canceled a major meeting with his government on Saturday.

Instead, the president flew to Sharm e-Sheik for what was termed by Egyptian sources as a vacation of several days.

The sources said Mubarak canceled his attendance of a meeting in Cairo on Saturday on orders from his physicians. On Wednesday, Mubarak was said to have collapsed during a speech to parliament.

Mubarak has been weakened by a combination of flu and low blood pressure, the sources said. But the Egyptian president has reduced his public appearances steadily over the last few months amid reports that he has been growing weaker.

The Egyptian sources said Mubarak, 75, was urged to cancel all official meetings as well as visits from foreign dignitaries. They said the president requires rest after working through a bad flu and the Islamic fast month of Ramadan.

"I admit that I did not take the advice of my doctors who told me to postpone the speech to the parliament until Sunday," Mubarak was quoted as telling the government-owned Al Gomhuriya daily on Friday.

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