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Film legend Omar Sharif’s agent confirms that he has Alzheimer’s disease

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Egyptian-born film legend Omar Sharif, star of Oscar-winning classics such as Lawrence of Arabia and Doctor Zhivago, is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, his agent said Tuesday.

The 83-year-old is being looked after by relatives in Egypt, where he lives.

“He was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s a while ago,” agent Steve Kenis told AFP adding: “It’s a serious disease and he hadn’t been been able to take any work for many months.”

“He’s under the care of his family,” he said.

The agent confirmed news first reported by the Spanish daily El Mundo, which cited the actor’s son Tarek.

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“I don’t want to comment on this issue,” the son told AFP by phone from Canada.

Known for his charismatic good looks and bridge-playing prowess, Sharif is resting at his home in Egypt, according to the Los Angeles Times newspaper.

Born in 1932 the son of a lumber merchant in Egypt’s second city Alexandria, Sharif was nominated for an Academy Award in 1963 for his role as Sherif Ali in “Lawrence of Arabia.”

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The actor, fluent in English, Arabic, Spanish, Italian, Greek and French, also won Golden Globes for Lawrence of Arabia and Doctor Zhivago.

Sharif, who was raised a Roman Catholic but later converted to Islam, started acting in the 1950s and had his most high-profile roles in the 1960s, when he also starred in Funny Girl opposite Barbra Streisand in 1968.

He kept working over the following decades, often in TV movies, while also earning a reputation as one of the world’s best known contract bridge players.

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He co-wrote a syndicated bridge newspaper column in the 1970s and 80s, as well as authoring several books and a bridge computer game, “Omar Sharif Bridge.”

The actor made something of a comeback in 2003 in the title role of the French film Monsieur Ibrahim (2003) in which he played an elderly Muslim shopkeeper.

The performance won him a best actor award at the Venice Film Festival and the best actor Cesar, France’s equivalent of an Oscar.

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Sharif underwent triple heart bypass surgery in 1992 and suffered a mild heart attack in 1994, according to the IMDb movie database website. He smoked 100 cigarettes a day but quit after the operation.

In January this year, Sharif’s actress ex-wife Faten Hamama died aged 83 after a career spanning seven decades and almost 100 films alongside masters of Egypt’s film industry. She was buried at her family cemetery in Cairo.


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‘An insult to all Afghans’: Kabul outraged after Trump floats plan to kill millions, wipe Afghanistan off face of the earth

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The U.S. president said he has not acted on the plan because he doesn't "want to kill 10 million people"

Kabul reacted with outrage and demanded clarification Tuesday after U.S. President Donald Trump said he has military plans that could wipe Afghanistan "off the face of the Earth," killing millions of people.

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The View’s Meghan McCain throws a fit when Beto O’Rourke says Trump is acting like a Nazi

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Meghan McCain on Tuesday reacted angrily when Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke said that President Donald Trump is acting like a Nazi during an appearance on ABC's "The View."

After O'Rourke talked about the need to stand up to Trump's extremism, McCain objected to some of the language he's used to describe the dangers of the movement that the president has been leading.

"You're talking about Trump supporters, comparing them to Nazis in Nuremberg," she said. "That sounds extreme to me as well."

"No, I'm not comparing everyone..." O'Rourke began.

"You compared his rally to Nuremberg!" McCain interrupted.

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US financier Jeffrey Epstein appeals bail denial in sex-trafficking case

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Jeffrey Epstein, the financier facing charges of sex trafficking involving dozens of underage girls, has appealed a federal judge’s decision to keep him in a Manhattan jail while he awaits trial.

According to a court notice made public on Tuesday, Epstein will ask the 2nd US Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn the judge’s July 18 rejection of his request to remain under house arrest in his $77 million mansion on Manhattan’s Upper East Side.

Epstein has pleaded not guilty and the appeal was expected.  His lawyer Reid Weingarten did not immediately respond to requests for comment. A spokesman for U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman in Manhattan declined to comment.

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