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Honecker Recuperating After Gallstone Operation

August 24, 1989

BERLIN (AP) _ East German leader Erich Honecker, who turns 77 on Friday, is improving after a gallstone operation, the Foreign Ministry said Thursday.

Honecker was ″continuing on the road to recovery″ following last week’s operation, a ministry official said.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, did not disclose other details, such as whether Honecker is still hospitalized.

The official East German news agency ADN reported Monday that Honecker had undergone surgery last week to remove gallstones.

Honecker was also hospitalized last month for problems related to gallstones. That illness forced him to leave the Warsaw Pact summit in Bucharest on July 8, before its conclusion.

Honecker appeared in public early last week for the first time in more than a month, looking relatively fit. His absence had fueled rumors that he was in poor health.

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