Bouteflika has had persistent health woes in past decade
ALGIERS - Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, "temporarily unavailable" on Monday because of "chronic bronchitis", has had persistent health woes leading to several periods in hospital over the past decade.
In power since 1999, the 79-year-old was weakened by a stroke in 2013 which affected his mobility and speech, and in rare recent public appearances he was in a wheelchair.
Here is a timeline of his health woes:
- Ulcer -
- November 26-December 17, 2005: Bouteflika admitted for three weeks to the Val-de-Grace military hospital in Paris. Despite a quasi information blackout, a single Algerian medical bulletin revealed he was operated on for a "haemorrhagic ulcer in the stomach".
He spent two weeks convalescing in Paris before returning to Algiers.
- From April 19-21, 2006, he was again admitted to Val-de-Grace for post-operative check-ups.
- Stroke -
- April 27-July 16, 2013: hospitalised for 80 days in Paris following a stroke, initially at Val-de-Grace before moving to an institution for disabled people for rehabilitation.
A June 11 health bulletin said Bouteflika suffered a transient ischaemic attack, or mini-stroke, on April 27, which has "not affected his vital functions".
After tests, "his doctors recommended that he observe a period of convalescence and functional rehabilitation to consolidate his recovery".
- January 13-16, 2014: Medical checks at Val-de Grace.
- Votes from wheelchair -
- On April 17, 2014, in his first public appearance since May 2012, he voted in the presidential election from a wheelchair. He won despite his health problems. On November 1, he made a rare public appearance, again in a wheelchair, at the tombs of "martyrs" of the Algerian independence war.
- November 13-15, 2014: briefly hospitalised in Grenoble in southern France. According to regional newspaper Le Dauphine Libere, he was in a cardio-vascular unit.
- December 3, 2015: Another visit to France for a "short private visit", during which he had "regular medical check-ups".
- Weakened -
- April 24-29, 2016: Bouteflika had "regular medical check-ups" in Geneva. His health became a topic for speculation at home after the publication on April 10 of a photograph, tweeted by then French premier Manuel Valls, in which he seemed very weakened.
- November 7-15, 2016: Again in Grenoble for a medical check-up.
- February 20, 2017: His office announced the postponement of a visit to Algeria by German Chancellor Angela Merkel because Bouteflika was "temporarily unavailable" due to "chronic bronchitis".