Thu, 02 Oct 2003

Matori moves out of ICU in Singapore

Agencies, Jakarta

Defense minister Matori Abdul Djalil has been moved out of the intensive care unit (ICU) but remains in a Singapore hospital after suffering a stroke nearly a month ago, an embassy official said Wednesday.

Matori was flown to Singapore for treatment after suffering a mild stroke here on Sept. 3. His condition is "continually improving," said Chalief Akbar, a spokesman for the Indonesian Embassy in Singapore.

"He can communicate easily. He is in a normal ward now after being discharged a week ago," Chalief was quoted by Associated Press as saying on Wednesday.

"His condition is improving, the same as before ... But we don't know when the doctors will discharge him."

Chalief said the defense minister's family members had been with him in Singapore since he was admitted to the hospital.

Meanwhile, the coordinating minister for political and security affairs said on Wednesday that the government would not appoint a replacement for Matori as defense minister.

"No, no acting defense minister has been appointed to take over from Matori," Susilo was quoted by Antara as saying Wednesday.

Some legislators and politicians urged the government earlier to appoint an acting minister to take over from Matori.

Meanwhile, defense ministry public relations head Abdul Azis Munaf said that Matori's health had improved but he still required further treatment and medication.

"So, we still don't know when Pak Matori will return to Indonesia," he said.