Monday, May 21, 2007

Iraqi President goes to Mayo Clinic

Iraqi President Jalal Talabani is spending nearly three weeks in the United States on a visit that's expected to include a medical checkup. Talabani boarded a plane in the Kurdish city of Sulaimaniyah, 160 miles northeast of Baghdad. He laughingly said he was going to the U.S. "to lose weight and have some rest and relaxation."
Iraqi President Jalal Talabani
But a senior Kurdish politician has said Talabani would go for a checkup at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, an appointment that had been scheduled for weeks. A spokesman denies the president has health problems. Talabani was admitted to King Hussein Medical Center in Amman in neighboring Jordan last February after he collapsed. Doctors said he suffered from exhaustion and dehydration caused by lung and sinus infections. He returned home 17 days later.