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Uzbekistan President Islam Karimov ‘critically ill’

Photo: Reuters

 

Uzbekistan President Islam Karimov is critically ill, the Uzbek government has said in a statement carried by local media, the BBC reports.

He is reported to have been taken to hospital on Saturday after suffering a stroke. His health has sharply deteriorated over the past 24 hours, the government said on Friday.

Opposition news reports have suggested that Mr Karimov, 78, has died.

He has led the former Soviet republic since independence in 1991.

On Sunday, the Uzbek government said Mr Karimov was receiving treatment but did not give details.

The next day, the president’s daughter said he had suffered a brain haemorrhage.

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