World famous Egyptian surgeon heads to Ethiopia

Magdi Yacoub, the renowned British-Egyptian heart surgeon, has left Cairo for Addis Ababa to practice cardiac surgery, German news agency DPA reported.

DPA quoted medical sources at Cairo International Airport as saying that Yacoub left Cairo with a 17-member team of doctors, experts and nurses for the Ethiopian capital, where he will conduct operations on Ethiopians, including children.

The agency did not clarify whether the visit carried any political significance.

Relations between Egypt and Ethiopia have grown tense since Addis Ababa finalised plans last June for a new hydroelectric plant on the Blue Nile, which Egypt fears will reduce water supplies vital for its 84 million inhabitants.

Yacoub is a world famous heart surgeon. He is a professor of cardiac surgery at Imperial College London.

One of his major achievements in the African continent was when he performed the first open heart surgery in Nigeria in 1974.