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Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu recovering after hernia surgery, hospital says

Netanyahu was to be under full anesthesia and unconscious for the procedure.
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/ Source: The Associated Press

JERUSALEM — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is recovering after undergoing hernia surgery Sunday, which was successful, a hospital spokesperson said.

Netanyahu’s office said the hernia was discovered during a routine checkup, and that the prime minister was to be under full anesthesia and unconscious for the procedure.

In a news briefing Sunday, Netanyahu took the time to thank people who checked in on him following his diagnosis.

"I promise you that I will go through this treatment successfully and will be back in action very quickly," he said.Justice Minister Yariv Levin, a close confidant who also holds the title of deputy prime minister, was to serve as acting prime minister during the operation, the prime minister's office said.

The director of the surgical department, who was part of the team that operated on the prime minister, said the surgery went as expected and that Netanyahu was "awake, recovering and talking with his family," according to Hadar Elboim, a spokesperson for Hadassah hospital.

Netanyahu, 74, has kept a full schedule throughout Israel’s nearly six-month-long war against Hamas, and his doctors have said he is in good health.

Last year, however, doctors acknowledged he had concealed a long-known heart problem after they implanted a pacemaker.