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2009/07/16 17:06 KST
(LEAD) Former President Kim Dae-jung put on respirator but stable: hospital

SEOUL, July 16 (Yonhap) -- Former President Kim Dae-jung was put on a respirator due to irregular breathing but is not in a critical condition, hospital officials said Thursday.

"He became short of breath on Wednesday night and was put on a respirator around 3 a.m. this morning," Park Chang-il, chief of Severance Hospital in Seoul, told reporters at a briefing. "His condition has improved since. He is conscious, and his pulse, breathing and body temperature are normal."

   "The respirator is not for extending his life. It's for treatment," Choi Kyung-deuk, a hospital spokesman, said.

"He has no complications, but has been receiving kidney dialysis for a long time" Park added.