JERUSALEM (Aug. 5)
Premier Menachem Begin left Hadassah Hospital Friday morning after a 15-day hospitalization, and returned to his home. Upon leaving the hospital, Begin told crowds of local and foreign reporters who came to cover the event, “I am leaving healthy and recovered.”
He told reporters that “Upon arrival at the hospital, the doctors explained to me the nature of my illness. They said a small artery of the arteries carrying blood to the brain was blocked. My doctors also told me that I should regard myself as lucky because the artery was very small. Had it been larger, my condition could have been serious. Thus, during the two weeks of my hospitalization I did not cease to rejoice. What a small artery….”
Thanking the medical teams that treated him, Begin said “I hope to see the doctors and nurses coming to visit me at my home, rather than me visiting them at the hospital.” He said that after one week of rest he hoped to return to work. Shortly before he left the hospital, Begin was summoned to one of the rooms in the neurological department where he found a large birthday cake marked: “Until 120.”
CELEBRATES 66TH BIRTHDAY
Yesterday the Premier celebrated his 66th birthday with members of his family. Among those congratulating him were President Carter who phoned him and wished him well. Carter told Begin that he would be meeting this week with Israeli Ambassador Ephraim Evron for lunch to clear up the present differences between the two countries. Begin also received a telephone call yesterday from Ambassador Robert Strauss, the special U.S. envoy to the autonomy talks, who assured the Premier that there was no change in the American stand on the issue of autonomy.
Begin was surrounded by his eight grandchildren, each of whom gave him a birthday gift they had made for him. Begin, in return, handed each of the children a birthday bag full of sweets.