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Rediff.com  » News » Ex-Israel PM Ariel Sharon faces 'imminent' death, say doctors

Ex-Israel PM Ariel Sharon faces 'imminent' death, say doctors

January 05, 2014 18:05 IST

Former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was facing "imminent" death with doctors pessimistic about his life-threatening condition, the hospital where he has been in coma since a 2006 stroke said on Sunday.

The health of 85-year-old Sharon has been deteriorating since Wednesday when he was said to be in a critical condition after a surgery.

Sharon was "still in danger of imminent death" although his "heart is holding out better than we thought," Zeev Rotstein, the director of ShebaMedicalCenter at Tel Hashomer said.

He said the former premier was fighting for his life like "a true lion" as his medical condition remained life-threatening on Sunday morning.

"I can't say I'm optimistic this morning, and I'm possibly even more pessimistic than I was before," Rotstein was quoted as saying by the Jerusalem Post. The eighth anniversary of the stroke that left Sharon in a coma and ended his political career was marked on Saturday with his family at his side.

Sharon's vital organs were slowly failing, and his health continued to deteriorate, according to the hospital. Rotstein on Saturday said that a slow deterioration in the

functioning of Sharon's vital organs had begun. Tests indicated a blood infection among the ailments that Sharon faced, he said.

Asked if Sharon was in his final days, Rotstein had said, "I personally feel so".

Sharon has been suffering from renal failure but was not expected to undergo dialysis due to the dangers the procedure could present given his fragile physical state.

Having fought in three Middle Eastern wars, Sharon is revered by many Israelis as the "security man" and reviled by numerous in the Middle East as the "butcher of Sabra and Shatila".

While serving as defence minister in 1982, he masterminded Israel's invasion of Lebanon. During the invasion, Lebanese Christian militiamen allied to Israel massacred hundreds of Palestinians in two Beirut refugee camps under Israeli control. He was nevertheless elected prime minister 18 years later, pledging to achieve "security and true peace", and served until his second stroke.

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