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Exhausted Gorbachev to be treated for overwork
November 26, 2001

Former Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev has gone into hospital to be treated for exhaustion resulting from overwork, Russian media reported.

The father of perestroika, who turned 70 in March, was to received "preventive and reparatory" treatment after the tests had shown he was in a "state of exhaustion," a member of his entourage told the Interfax news agency.

"Gorbachev has been working hard recently, making foreign visits, including trips to South Korea and Japan, preparing and presiding the constitutive assemblies of the new Social Democratic party, and so on. It's natural that he should be exhausted," the source said.

On Saturday Gorbachev, who resigned as president of the defunct Soviet Union on December 25, 1991, was elected head of a newly created social democratic party, though he has denied harbouring ambitions to become president of Russia.

Since the death of his wife Raisa from leukemia two years ago he has maintained a busy work routine, involving himself in domestic politics and environmental issues.

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