Bashir had 'small' surgery - media

Sudan's President Omar Hassan al-Bashir had a "small, successful" operation in Saudi Arabia, state media said.

Omar Hassan al-Bashir. AFP

KHARTOUM - Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir underwent a "small, successful" operation in Saudi Arabia, state media said on Tuesday, his second surgery this year.

Bashir, 68, has held fewer public rallies in the past few months, prompting Sudanese newspapers and blogs to speculate about his health.

Last month a government official said the president had surgery on his vocal cords in Qatar in August but was in good health.

Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court for war crimes in the western Darfur region, which he denies.

Saudi Arabia is not a signatory to the ICC and despite the arrest warrant, Bashir has been able to visit countries including Ethiopia, China, Egypt, and Chad among others since it was issued in 2009.

He has ruled Sudan since a bloodless coup brought him to power in 1989, weathering multiple armed insurgencies, years of U.S. trade sanctions and the secession of oil-producing South Sudan last year.

On Tuesday, state news agency SUNA said Bashir underwent a small, successful operation in Saudi Arabia, a day after state media reported he would receive a medical checkup and meet the king during his trip.

The report did not elaborate.