MONTREAL -- The husband of pop star Celine Dion is recovering after having a cancerous tumour removed from his throat just before Christmas.

Rene Angelil said in a statement released by his publicist today that the Dec. 23 operation was a success.

It says he spent a few days in hospital and that he is recovering at home in Las Vegas.

The 72-year-old Angelil was previously diagnosed with throat cancer in 1999, prompting Dion to take time off as he recovered.

The couple say they don't want to give interviews and are asking media to respect their privacy.

Dion says in the statement she wants Angelil to focus on getting healthy and to avoid the daily stress of work.