Ariel Sharon turns 80

Tuesday, February 26, 2008 |  by Staff Writer

The family of Ariel Sharon quietly marked the comatose former prime minister's 80th birthday at a hospital in Tel Aviv on Tuesday.

Family members said they preferred not to make a media spectacle out of the event and refused to talk to the press.

Sharon suffered a massive stroke on January 5, 2006, five years after becoming prime minister, and just months after forcibly ejecting the Jews of Gaza from their homes.

The fabled and controversial war hero is reportedly breathing without the aid of machines and his vital signs are good, though doctors are not optimistic that he will regain consciousness.

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