Pakistan praying for Holbrooke's recovery: Qureshi

Written by: Abdul Nisar
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Islamabad, Dec.12 (ANI): Pakistan on Saturday described U.S.President Barack Obama's Special Envoy to Pakistan and Afghanistan, Richard C. Holbrooke as a great friend of the country, and hoped that he would recover soon from aortic surgery.

In statement issued on behalf of the Pakistan Government and the Pakistan Foreign Office, Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi said: "Ambassador Holbrooke is a great friend of Pakistan. We wish him health and long life."

Holbrooke, was said to be in critical condition on Saturday after undergoing aortic surgery at the hospital here.

A medical bulletin issued by hospital staff said doctors had performed surgery on Holbrooke to repair a tear in an artery.

The U.S. State Department said:"This (Saturday) morning, doctors completed surgery to repair a tear in his aorta. He is in critical condition and has been joined by his family."

The veteran diplomat was admitted to George Washington University Hospital Friday after falling ill while at work at the State Department.

He underwent evaluations at the hospital Friday.

Holbrooke, 69, was entrusted with the task to lead American diplomatic efforts in the region in the early days of the Obama Administration and has since been traveling to the two countries and engaging with the top Pakistani and Afghan officials since.

He has also undertook travels to several European and Asian countries as part of efforts to coordinate the U.S. policy in the region.

The diplomat is a former two-time Assistant Secretary of State, Ambassador to Germany, and was a key player in the Dayton Peace accords, which brokered an end to the conflict in Bosnia. (ANI)

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