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Flu-stricken Pope lies low

Pope John Paul II has influenza, forcing him to cancel scheduled audiences for health reasons for the first time in more than a year, his spokesman has said.

The 84 year old came down with the illness on Sunday and doctors advised that he cut back on his activities, according to Dr Joaquin Navarro-Valls.

"He has joined the more than a million Italians who have come down with the flu," Navarro-Valls told The Associated Press.

Asked by Vatican Radio if it was a mild case, Navarro-Valls said "of course," adding that symptoms were evident during his regular noon appearance Sunday in his apartment window overlooking St. Peter's Square.

Navarro-Valls expressed caution, however, about when John Paul would resume his regular activities.

"We'll see," he told the radio. "As always with influenza, it is a day-to-day question."

There appeared to be no particular alarm in the Vatican City enclave. Officials went about business as usual while Vatican Radio was quick to issue its reassuring report.

Pope Sidelined By Flu (Associated Press/CBS 31/1/05)

Recalcitrant peace dove refuses to leave papal apartment (CathNews 31/1/05)
Pope's Lenten message urges respect for elderly (CathNews 28/1/05)

Pope suffering from flu, cancels audiences (ABC News/Reuters 31/1/05)
Holy Father to suspend audiences due to "flu-like symptoms" (Catholic News Agency 31/1/05)
Pope reminds annulment officials to seek truth, not expedient solutions (Catholic News Agency 31/1/05)
Pope prays that worldwide solidarity shown in tsunami disaster will serve as source of hope (Catholic News Agency 31/1/05)
Ailing Pope suspends audiences (Catholic World News 31/1/05)
Pope Cancels Audiences After Getting Flu (The Guardian/Associated Press 31/1/05)
Sickly pope cancels Vatican meetings (Reuters/IOL 31/1/05)
Defend unborn's rights, Pope tells Catholic lawyers (Sydney Morning Herald 1/2/05)
Papal fixation with sex upsets priests (The Age 1/2/05)
Pope satirist on trial in Poland (Turkish Weekly 25/1/05)
Peace Must Be Taught From Childhood, Says Pope (Zenit 30/1/05)
International Commitment Urged to End Leprosy (Zenit 30/1/05)
Pope Warns Church Courts About Marriage Rulings (Zenit 30/1/05)
On Educating Children in Peace (Zenit 30/1/05)
Pope's Message to Peoples Affected by Tsunami (Zenit 30/1/05)

32 Feb 2005