- Zambian president Levy Mwanawasa's health is reported to have deteriorated on Sunday night requiring urgent surgery on Monday in a Paris hospital.
Zambian vice president Rupiah Banda, who is holding fort in president's absence, confirmed in a statement that doctors noticed a deterioration in 59-year-old leader's condition late Sunday night.
"The intervention was conducted Monday morning," he said in website of state house of Zambia further indicating that a team of doctors have reported that the intervention was successful but described condition of president as being serious.
President Mwanawasa who was elected in 2002 and is in the middle of a second four-year term, suffered stroke on 29 June on the eve of African Union meeting in Egypt.
Mr Mwanawasa, outspoken critic of Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe, was rushed to Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh hospital and was later transferred to Paris for treatment.
Mr Mwanawasa's stroke in Egypt was a blow to Zimbabwe's opposition having created expectations that Zimbabwean issues would be addressed at the summit. He was outspoken against violence, political and economic instability in Zimbabwe that contrasted with positions taken by other neighbours of Zimbabwe.
In July, Zambia's opposition called for an investigation into whether the president was fit to lead the country. Mr Mwanawasa's health has always been an issue during his presidency, where he suffered a minor stroke in April 2006, four months before general elections.
Under Zambian law, if a leader is incapacitated, he can be replaced by his deputy, who can serve in an acting capacity for 90 days. If the president is unable to resume office, elections must then be held within a further 90 days.
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