NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — Cyprus’ health ministry says the country’s former president Dimitris Christofias is in a critical condition in hospital with respiratory problems.

In a statement Monday, the ministry said Christofias was admitted to Nicosia General Hospital’s transplantation unit on Saturday.

The statement said the health minister is in touch with Christofias’ doctors and an update on the former president’s health will be issued when his condition changes.

The Soviet-educated Christofias, 72, who led the communist-rooted AKEL party for more than two decades, was elected in 2008 to a single five-year term on the east Mediterranean island nation.