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Gorbachev Cancels Trip To Prague Due to Health Issues

Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev (file photo)
Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev (file photo)

Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev has cancelled a trip to the Czech Republic due to health reasons.

The 85-year-old had been scheduled to attend an international conference on European security in Prague from September 16 to September 18.

Organizers of the conference said on September 14 that Gorbachev's doctors advised him from traveling after he felt ill on September 13.

Gorbachev told the Interfax news agency that his decision not to travel to Prague "is not so much about the worsening of my health state, but about the large amount of work I am currently doing" at the Gorbachev Foundation think tank, one of the organizers of the conference.

Gorbachev, who was to be main guest at the event, was also scheduled to meet Czech President Milos Zeman.

Gorbachev's last official visit to the Czech Republic was in 1999, when he received the top state award, the Order of the White Lion, from former Czech President Vaclav Havel.

Gorbachev's liberalization policies in the 1980s known as "perestroika" led to the end of the Cold War.

Based on reporting by Interfax and