A doctor attending the ailing Spanish dictator, General Francisco Franco, has suggested that he may yet recover from his severe illness.
LV & CU La Paz hospital
SV Ministers arrive to visit Franco
SV PAN Carlos and Princess Sofia arrive and enter
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SV & CU People waiting outside hospital (3 shots)
SV Carlos and Princess Sofia leave and enter car and car leaves hospital (2 shots)
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Background: A doctor attending the ailing Spanish dictator, General Francisco Franco, has suggested that he may yet recover from his severe illness.
General Franco suffered from the first of a series of heart attacks three weeks ago and has since undergone two major operations, including the removal of most of his stomach.
His death has been expected for the past two weeks.
But a doctor attending General Franco, issued a statement saying that there were now "well founded hopes that the General's life can be saved".
The doctor, who declined to be named, said it was "difficult to predict exactly" when the General would be completely recovered but added that "if everything goes as positively as it has up to now, he could recover satisfactorily after four or five months".
The doctor said that in many countries doctors would have thought twice about trying to save a man of General Franco's age and condition. But he said that Spanish doctors "are to some extent more humane ... normally one gives up hope for patients in the same condition as the General, but medicine was created to save lives and must never give up in the face of death."
The doctor said that the large medical team attending the General was not keeping his alive just because he was Spain's leader.
He said that all the doctors in the team "have saved patients in similar circumstances, with the difference that this patient is called Francisco Franco".
Spanish government ministers and the acting Spanish head of state, Prince Juan Carlos, have been attending the hospital where General Franco is receiving attention every day for the past several weeks.