BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) — Saddam Hussein underwent an operation
to repair a hernia about 10 days ago but has made a full recovery,
Iraqi sources said yesterday.

The ousted dictator was taken to Baghdad’s Ibn Sina
hospital near the U.S.-controlled Green Zone for the procedure,
which was performed by Iraqi doctors, according to sources close to
the Human Rights Ministry.

The operation lasted about an hour and Saddam was returned to
his cell the same day, the sources said on condition of anonymity.
Efforts to contact U.S. officials were unsuccessful because their
offices were closed for the day.

Saddam has been in U.S. custody since Dec. 13 when he was
captured by American troops in a hole near his hometown of
Tikrit.

He is believed to be held in an American-guarded facility near
Baghdad International Airport.

He appeared in court in July for a preliminary hearing into
charges for which the government intends to prosecute him because
of alleged crimes committed during his rule.

A delegation of the International Committee for the Red Cross
met with Saddam in prison in early October, spokeswoman Nada Dumani
said.

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