NELSON Mandela, hospitalised with a lung infection, has successfully undergone a procedure to have gallstones removed, the government said yesterday.

The 94-year-old former president and Nobel Peace laureate, who came to power in historic all-race elections in 1994 after decades struggling against apartheid, was said to be recovering.

Fragile health stops him making public appearances in South Africa, although he continues to receive high-profile domestic and international visitors, including former US President Bill Clinton in July.

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■south africa