CAIRO, Egypt (AP) _ Egypt's ambassador to Rome, Hoda el-Marasy, died in Paris during an operation to remove a tumor from her spinal cord, the Foreign Ministry said Sunday. She was 53.

Mrs. el-Marasy died on Saturday. She had been ambassador to Rome for the past four years.

Mrs. el-Marasy was born in June 1939. She joined the diplomatic corps in 1961 and had previously worked in Egyptian embassies in Paris and Dakkar.

She is survived by her husband, Fayez Biktash, Egypt's ambassador to Benin, and two daughters.