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Turkey PM cancels Qatar trip after surgery: agency

Erdogan calls off trip to Doha after doctors advise him not to travel post-surgery

AFP , Wednesday 7 Dec 2011
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Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has cancelled an official trip to Qatar this weekend and will instead rest at home after undergoing surgery last month, the Anatolia news agency said Wednesday.

"Erdogan will be resting this weekend too," said Anatolia.

According to his official programme, the Turkish premier was supposed to fly to Qatar's capital Doha on 10 December to attend a meeting of the Alliance of Civilisations.

Erdogan's doctors advised him not to travel as it might be tiring, the private NTV television reported.

The 57-year-old prime minister underwent laparoscopic gastrointestinal surgery on 26 November.

Erdogan met with US Vice President Joe Biden last Saturday at his home in Istanbul.

On Wednesday, he met Qatar's Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani, also at his home. He was also expected to meet with Turkish Cypriot Prime Minister Irsen Kucuk later on Wednesday.

Murat Yetkin, editor-in-chief of English-language Hurriyet Daily News, said in his column on Tuesday that the attention of ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) supporters was focused on Erdogan's health.

"Yesterday (Monday) marked the third consecutive week without a cabinet meeting, and the party priority now is to see him back in business," he wrote.

The prime minister might return to work next Monday for a weekly cabinet meeting, said NTV.

Erdogan has been in office since 2003.

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