British ex-premier Thatcher to leave hospital: friend

1st November 2010, Comments 0 comments

Former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher was to leave hospital Monday nearly a fortnight after being admitted with flu, a family friend said.

"She is being released from hospital this afternoon. Then she is going to go home and rest and recuperate," Lord Tim Bell, who worked as an advisor to Thatcher during her premiership, told AFP.

Thatcher, 85, was admitted to hospital in west London on October 19 for tests after failing to shake off a bout of flu.

She has previously suffered a series of minor strokes and has dementia.

Thatcher, who held power at the head of a Conservative government from 1979 to 1990, was forced to miss a planned birthday party at Downing Street on October 14 because of her illness.

Prime Minister David Cameron, also a Conservative, sent his "warmest wishes" to his predecessor for her return home, his spokeswoman said.

Known as the "Iron Lady", Thatcher was the longest continuously serving British prime minister of the 20th century and the only woman to be premier.

© 2010 AFP

0 Comments To This Article