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No official word of Somare’s condition, despite rumors of death

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, April 28, 2011) – Papua New Guinea's elderly leader Sir Michael Somare is said to be recovering in hospital after undergoing surgery.

Sir Michael has been in Singapore on medical leave for the past two weeks and there have been rumours the 75-year-old had died.

But his spokeswoman, and daughter, Betha Somare said Sir Michael underwent surgery last week and is recovering well.

In a short statement Ms Somare said, "he remains a fighter and will be around for many years to come".

No further details of the surgery were released.

In a separate statement, his deputy chief of staff, Leonard Louma, said Sir Michael will remain in Singapore until he is fit enough to resume his duties as Prime Minister.

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