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Little fighters' first cuddles since op

Conjoined twins Hassan and Hussein Benhaffaf were reunited today for the first time since the mammoth operation to separate them.

The five-month-old boys are recovering well following the 14-hour operation to separate them at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London and were moved out of intensive care at the weekend.

Parents Angie and Azzedine Benhaffaf, from East Cork, said: "We've enjoyed our first cuddles since their separation and they were worth the long wait. The boys were reunited and it was very emotional to see them back together, in each other's arms."

A spokeswoman for the hospital said the little fighters had been moved to a surgical ward and were able to breathe unaided and feed from a bottle.

Mr and Mrs Benhaffaf said in a statement: "Our two little fighters have lived up to their name. It feels just like a miracle and we cannot believe we got our happy ending. Thanks to everyone for your continued support.

"Their sisters, Malika and Iman, are getting used to their brothers being apart and are looking forward to holding each of the twins."


The brothers were born last December at the University College London Hospital.

They went home to Cork in January and a fund was set up to help their parents cover medical costs. The family returned to London in March to prepare for the surgery.

Conjoined twins are very rare, occurring once in every 200,000 births when a single fertilised egg splits to form twins but the separation is incomplete.