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Russia: Kremlin Doctors Say Yeltsin Operation "Big And Serious"

Moscow, 20 September 1996 (RFE/RL) -- The chief Kremlin doctor today said Russian President Boris Yeltsin's coming heart operation will be "very big and very serious."

Sergei Mironov told a televised news briefing in Moscow that Yeltsin's stay in the hospital will again be extended for another three or four days because the president needs more tests and analysis. He gave no other details.

Itar-Tass news agency quotes Mironov as saying Yeltsin will most likely be operated on by Professor Renat Akchurin. U.S. heart surgeon Michael Debakey, due to arrive in Moscow on Monday, reportedly will participate in consultations, but not the operation itself.

Yeltsin has announced that Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin will assume presidential powers shortly before Yeltsin enters surgery.