Mubarak Has Stomach Cancer, Says Lawyerإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Egypt's ousted president Hosni Mubarak, whose trial on charges of ordering the killing of anti-regime protesters is due to start in August, has stomach cancer, his lawyer Farid al-Dib said on Monday.
"He has a stomach cancer and the tumors are growing," the lawyer told Agence France Presse.
The former president is currently in custody at a hospital in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh where he has been since suffering heart problems during questioning on April 13.
Mubarak, who turned 83 in May, and his sons Alaa and Gamal are set to face trial on August 3 on charges of ordering the killing of protesters during the uprising in January and February that toppled the veteran leader.
The Mubaraks, along with a host of former ministers, also face charges of corruption.
Their trial date coincides with Ramadan, the Muslim holy month of fasting.
On May 31, the public prosecutor said Mubarak was too ill to be moved from hospital to prison, after a series of statements by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, which took power when Mubarak was ousted on February 11, saying they were preparing for his transfer.
He is said to be suffering from "episodes of unconsciousness due to circulatory problems and low blood pressure," the prosecutor's statement said.
He also suffers "an irregular heartbeat which could lead to a sudden heart attack," it added.
Mubarak is described as "generally weak and depressed, and he has trouble getting out of bed without help."
In an interview with CNN two days previously, on May 29, Mubarak's lawyer said the former president was in "very bad health."
"The president has serious heart problems and complications with his stomach from the operation he had in Germany last year," Dib said.
In March 2010, Mubarak went to Germany for surgery. Doctors at the time said he had suffered from chronic calculus cholecystitis -- an inflammation of the gall bladder accompanied by gall stones -- and a duodenal polyp.
They said he also had a growth removed from his small intestine.
Until the outbreak of anti-government protests on January 25, Mubarak seemed insurmountable as president of the most populous nation in the Arab world, backed by the United States and the military, from whose ranks he had emerged.
Mubarak had survived 10 attempts on his life, and at 82 his health was a subject of speculation but a taboo subject in Egypt, as he kept his private life a carefully guarded secret.
The spectacular fall in February of one of the region's most powerful leaders after 18 days of nationwide anti-regime protests was followed by repeated calls for his trial.
An official inquiry found that at least 846 people were killed in the protests, many of them from gunshot wounds. At least 6,000 were injured.
The murder charges may lead to a death sentence if Mubarak is found guilty, the justice minister said in May.