NICOSIA – Cyprus’ ailing President Nicos Anastasiades will have heart surgery in the United States on Dec. 4, a government spokesman said, without identifying where it would take place.
Anastasiades, 68, will fly to the United States on Nov. 29 ahead of the operation, government spokesman Nicos Christodoulides said in a statement.
Doctors advised surgery for Anastasiades, who is a heavy smoker, earlier this month. He had been hospitalized in Brussels during a meeting of European Union leaders after suffering a nose bleed said related to high blood pressure.
He had previously said he would have the operation after the Christmas holidays, citing a heavy work schedule. He’s expected back in Cyprus before Christmas, Christodoulides said.
Anastasiades was elected President of Cyprus in February 2013 for a five-year term after campaigning against a confiscation of bank accounts – which he promptly approved as soon as he took office in return for a 10 billion euro bailout from the Troika of the European Union-International Monetary Fund-European Central Bank (EU-IMF-ECB).
He recently broke off talks with Turkish Cypriots on reunifying the island divided since an unlawful Turkish invasion 40 years ago after Turkey sent a research vessel and warship into Cypriot waters to search for oil and gas.