Pak Prez Zardari suffers heart attack; likely to quit

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Asif Ali Zardari
Washington, Dec 7: With the turmoil in Pakistan hotting up over the strain in the US relationship, there are reports of another issue that could lead to some internal tension. It has been reported that Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari has suffered a minor heart attack. He has left for Dubai following the incident. Sources within the US government consider that on account of his ill-health, he is also likely to resign, media reports revealed.

According to a statement given out by Pakistan's official news agency Associated Press of Pakistan, Zardari had left for Dubai on Tuesday evening in order to visit his children and also to undergo some medical tests. With the President's personal physician Col Salman not ready to divulge details, he said that the proposed medical tests were of routine nature and was in connection with a previously diagnosed cardiovascular condition.

Zardari is believed to have been taken to Dubai on an air ambulance. He is most likely to undergo an angioplasty procedure on Wednesday. With varying reports emerging on Zardari's health, the Pak media has reported that the issue of his quitting is out of question. A former US government official has been quoted as saying to agencies that Zardari was "incoherent" when US President Barack Obama spoke to him regarding the NATO firing that led to the death of Pak troops.

Zardari was to address a joint session of Pakistan's parliament on the controversial memogate scandal that claimed to warn of a military coup following the May 2 covert operation to kill Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. He was under immense pressure after the issue came to light. A former official was quoted as saying, "The noose was getting tighter -- it was only a matter of time."

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