World / Middle East

Possible improvement detected in condition of Sharon

(Xinhua) Updated: 2013-01-28 03:11

JERUSALEM - Former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, who has been in a coma since 2006, has been undergoing medical examinations showing a possible improvement in his condition, the Channel 2 news reported Sunday.

According to the report, some "significant activities" were traced in Sharon's brain wave activity in a medical checkup on Thursday, after medical staffers showed the comatose patient pictures of his relatives and hearing the voice of his son, Gilad.

Prof. Martin Moiti, an expert in brain functioning from the University of California, was in charge of the test held at the Sorokoa hospital in Be'er Sheva last week, which was done by the advanced technique of Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (FMRI).

Moiti called the results "surprising and exciting." However, the results are not increasing the chances for Sharon's recovery.

Sharon, 85, served as Israel's prime minister between 2001 and 2005, and started the Kadima party after leaving the Likud party, to which he had belonged in earlier decades.

Sharon, a decorated soldier and veteran politician, was one of the most popular Israeli leaders in recent years.

In 2005, Sharon made history by pulling Israeli settlers out of the Gaza Strip and parts of the West Bank, as part of a disengagement program during his tenure.

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