Ben Ali reportedly in coma after stroke

Feb. 17, 2011 at 10:23 AM
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JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia, Feb. 17 (UPI) -- Former Tunisian President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali suffered a stroke and was in a coma in a Saudi Arabian hospital, a French online journalist reported.

Journalist Nicolas Beau, citing Tunisian sources, posted on his blog that Ben Ali was in critical condition in a medical facility in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, Radio France Internationale reported Thursday.

It is believed the ousted leader was admitted to the hospital Tuesday under a false name, the blogger said.

The claim that Ben Ali was hospitalized also was reported by Web-zine JSSnews, although it reported he suffered a heart attack, RFI said.

Ben Ali had ruled Tunisia for 23 years before a popular uprising forced him to flee the country in January.

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