Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin was taken to the intensive care unit
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has been taken to the intensive care unit of Walter Reed Military Hospital in Washington. As a Pentagon spokesman stated earlier, it was the result of "symptoms suggestive of a sudden bladder problem." He handed over the duties to his deputy Kathleen Hicks.
Pentagon spokesman Gen. Pat Ryder initially relayed that Lloyd Austin would continue to perform his duties while hospitalized, but that his deputy was ready to take over "if necessary." A few hours later, he reported that Austin had handed over duties to his deputy Kathleen Hicks.
- Earlier today, Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III was transported by his security detail to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center to be seen for symptoms suggesting an emergent bladder issue. Tonight, after a series of tests and evaluations, the Secretary was admitted into the critical care unit at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center for supportive care and close monitoring - a Pentagon spokesman said in a statement.
The 70-year-old Austin had previously been diagnosed with prostate cancer, necessitating his hospitalization in December and January and surgery. Austin has been criticized by many congressmen, both Democratic and Republican, for failing to inform the public and politicians, including President Joe Biden, of his situation.
The topic has become a carrying one during the ongoing presidential campaign. It was picked up by Donald Trump, who even demanded the resignation of the defense secretary.
The general apologized for his behavior. Next Tuesday, Austin was to travel to Brussels for a meeting of the Contact Group on Ukraine and later was to attend a periodic meeting of defense ministers of NATO countries.
Source: ABC News, BBC