Nation of Islam: Farrakhan Heads Home From Hospital

Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan has been released from a hospital after a five-week stay that included major surgery, the organization announced Tuesday.

Farrakhan, 73, had been hospitalized Jan. 5 to undergo a 12-hour abdominal operation designed to correct damage caused by treatment for prostate cancer, according to the Nation of Islam.

He was released Sunday, according to the black American Muslim group, which has declined to reveal where he was hospitalized. He had prostate cancer surgery in 2000.

"He's not where he needs to be; it will take several more days and we celebrate this victory, but there's still some days ahead and weeks for him to have a full recovery, but the doctors say he has already exceeded their expectations," Ishmael Muhammad, Farrakhan's assistant minister at Mosque Maryam in Chicago, said in the statement posted Tuesday on the Nation of Islam Web site.

A man who answered the phone at Mosque Maryam on Tuesday night said the group would have no comment beyond the statement.

Farrakhan recently ceded leadership of the organization to an executive board because of ill health. However, he is scheduled to speak Feb. 25 on the theme "One Nation Under God" at Detroit's Ford Field as part of a convention during the group's annual Saviours' Day observance.

The Detroit appearance may be Farrakhan's last major public address, according to Tuesday's statement, in which Ishmael Muhammad said Farrakhan "doesn't see himself coming before the public on such a major stage as we are preparing in Detroit."

But the statement was qualified, saying Farrakhan may honor lesser engagements.

Farrakhan is to continue his recuperation at home, according to the statement, which did not specify whether he would be at his home in Chicago or the farm he owns in southwestern Michigan's Berrien County, about 190 miles west of Detroit.