George Alagiah thanks viewers for support after cancer diagnosis

George Alagiah Alagiah presents the BBC's main evening news bulletins

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BBC News presenter George Alagiah has thanked viewers for their messages of goodwill after his cancer diagnosis.

"It's been a week of shock and hope, tears and laughter, realism and optimism," he wrote on Twitter.

"But so touched and strengthened by good wishes. Thank you all."

The presenter of the BBC News at Six and Ten, as well as the GMT programme on BBC World News, will be off air "for a while" as he receives treatment for bowel cancer.

He is "optimistic for a positive outcome", the BBC said in a statement last week.

The 58-year-old first joined the BBC in 1989 and spent many years as one of the BBC's leading foreign correspondents, reporting on events such as the genocide in Rwanda and the conflict in Kosovo.

He was made an OBE in 2008's New Year Honours.

In a second tweet, Alagiah thanked his newsroom colleague Sophie Raworth for running the Boston marathon in aid of cancer research.

"What a friend, what a woman!" he wrote.

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