Idi Amin wakes from coma

Former Ugandan dictator Idi Amin has come out of a coma and his condition is improving, a source at a hospital in this Red Sea city said on Wednesday.

“He’s out of a coma and his condition is improving,” the hospital source said.

“However, he remains in the intensive care unit” at King Faisal Specialist Hospital, one of Saudi Arabia’s top medical centres, the source added, giving no further details.

Hospital officials refused to specify the exact cause of Amin’s illness or provide details about his condition at the request of family members who have been living with him in Saudi Arabia in obscurity for more than 10 years.

Amin, a Muslim now in his eighties, was admitted to hospital on Friday.

His 1971 to 1979 reign in Uganda following a military coup was one of the bloodiest in Africa’s modern history, and Amin has not been back to his country since he was ousted by joint forces of Tanzanian troops and Ugandan exiles on April 11 1979.

Up to 400 000 people are estimated to have died during his time in office or are still unaccounted for.

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni warned on Tuesday that Amin could face trial for his atrocities if he returned to his homeland alive.

On Tuesday, one of his wives and a daughter joined him at his bedside after a flight from Kampala “facilitated” by the Ugandan government. - Sapa-AFP

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