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Dick Cheney undergoes heart transplant

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Dick Cheney, left,  was President George W. Bush's vice-president during his presidency between 2001-9 [Reuters]Dick Cheney, the former US vice president, has had a heart transplant and is now recovering in hospital, his office has said.

An aide said Cheney was recovering at a Virginia hospital following an operation on Saturday.

The 71-year-old's history of heart problems is well documented, including five heart attacks, quadruple bypass surgery, two artery clearing angioplasties and an operation to implant a pacemaker.

He had waited nearly two years for his new heart, from an unknown donor.

"Although the former vice president and his family do not know the identity of the donor, they will be forever grateful for this lifesaving gift," aide Kara Ahern said in a written statement.

Cheney served as vice president for eight years, from 2001 until 2009, under George W Bush. He also served in the White House under Richard Nixon and was was chief of staff under Gerald Ford.

Cheney was seen as a hawk during Bush's presidency, accused by opponents of often advocating a belligerent US stance in world affairs during wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.


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