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Berlusconi was operated on his face

07 march 2011, 22:54
Silvio Berlusconi
Silvio Berlusconi
Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi was operated on his face for four hours on Monday under general anaesthetic to restore his jaw after an attack by a deranged man in 2009, AFP reports citing the Italian government.

Berlusconi "underwent a maxillofacial operation with bone transplant and implant under general anaesthetic," his personal doctor Alberto Zangrillo was quoted as saying in a statement released by the government's press office.

The prime minister's operation has forced him to cancel a scheduled meeting with Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman planned for Tuesday.

"The operation lasted for four hours and was necessary to reconstitute the anatomy and his ability to chew, which were gravely compromised by the attack on December 13, 2009," Zangrillo said, adding: "He is in good condition."

The doctor said Berlusconi, 74, was now recovering at his villa outside Milan and could be back at work for a key cabinet meeting on Thursday.

Ministers are expected to give their backing to a proposed radical overhaul of Italy's justice system that has the centre-left opposition up in arms.

Berlusconi was attacked in the middle of a crowd the centre of Milan in December 2009 by a man with a history of psychiatric problems. The man struck Berlusconi in the face with a souvenir model of Milan's gothic cathedral.

The prime minister's nose and two teeth were broken and he had to be hospitalised. He spent two weeks out of the public eye after the attack.

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