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Nelson Mandela has recovered, government says

Nelson Mandela, former South African president, has recovered from a lung infection and surgery to remove gallstones.

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Former South African president Nelson Mandela is pictured during a meeting with Britain's Prime Minister Gordon Brown (not pictured) at his hotel, in central London, on June 24, 2008. (Dylan Martinez/AFP/Getty Images)

Nelson Mandela has recovered from a lung infection and surgery to remove gallstones, the government said Sunday. 

The 94-year-old apartheid hero and former South African president "has recovered from his surgical procedure and the lung infection, his doctors said today," according to a statement from President Jacob Zuma's office, Agence France Presse reported

"The medical (examination) said president Mandela has made steady progress and that clinically, he continues to improve," it added.  

Mac Maharaj, Zuma's spokesman, told CNN International that Mandela is receiving continued treatment at his home in the Johannesburg suburb of Houghton. He is also reportedly reading newspapers, sitting up in bed, and seeing visitors, according the Associated Press, which cited South African media reports.

Mandela, who has not appeared in public since 2010, spent most of December in the hospital, which was his longest bout of medical care since he was released from jail in 1990, NBC News reported

"President Zuma extended good wishes to Madiba on his recovery and once again assured him of the love and support of all South Africans," Zuma said, referring to Mandela by his often-used clan name, according to AFP. 

More from GlobalPost: South Africa: Nelson Mandela home from hospital

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/africa/south-africa/130106/nelson-mandela-has-recovered