Dagan’s condition ‘improving’ after liver transplant

Former police commander Bar-Lev, a friend of the ex-Mossad chief, tells 'Post' he opted for surgery in Belarus because donor there.

Meir Dagan 370 (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
Meir Dagan 370
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
The medical condition of former Mossad chief Meir Dagan, hospitalized in Belarus after undergoing a liver transplant, has improved in recent hours, Dagan’s friend and former police commander Uri Bar- Lev told The Jerusalem Post Wednesday.
Dagan, 67, had traveled to Belarus after a matching donor was found for him there, Bar-Lev added.
“All of the people of Israel are praying for his full recovery. We all know his contribution to the security of Israel. We pray that he wins the battle for life like has won all other battles,” Bar-Lev added.
On Tuesday, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko said publicly that a “former Mossad chief” had undergone a liver transplant at Belarus hospital at the beginning of October.
When Belarusian doctors realized their patient’s identity and told the president, Lukashenko reportedly told them to “tell the general that like any doctor anywhere, we cannot promise anything, but we will do everything so that [the operation] is carried out with the most up-to-date technology.”
Lukashenko said that surgeons in several countries, including the US, Germany and Sweden, had refused to operate on the patient after learning of his former career as a spymaster – a claim that was later denied by Dagan’s associates.
“He traveled to Belarus because of the donor,” Bar- Lev said. Asked if the disclosure formed a security problem for Dagan, Bar-Lev denied that it did.
Dagan’s family has declined to comment.
Dagan retired from the IDF as a major-general in 1995 and was appointed head of the Mossad in 2002.
His tenure was extended twice.
Foreign media attribute several high-profile assassinations to Dagan, including that of Hezbollah operations officer Imad Mughniyeh in Damascus on February 12, 2008.
Jerusalem Post staff contributed to this report.