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World

Arafat analysis "inevitably indicates involvement of a third party"

Translated Monday 18 November 2013, by Hannah Mosford

Analysis of samples taken by a Swiss laboratory from the historic Palestinian leader’s body support the theory of polonium poisoning. The result "inevitably indicates the involvement of a third party". For Yasser Arafat’s widow there is no doubt - her husband was poisoned.

According to Swiss experts, the level of polonium in Yasser Arafat’s femur and ribs was 18 to 36 times higher than normal, therefore, "the results moderately support the proposition that the death was the consequence of poisoning with polonium-210." The medical examiners presented an expert report to the representatives of Mrs Suha Arafat and the Palestinian Authority. On Thursday, they presented their conclusions to the press. In their opinion, finding such a quantity of polonium in the bones, "inevitably indicates the involvement of a third party". Professor Francois Bochud, director of the Institute of Radiation Physics declared, "Our results reasonably support the poisoning theory". If their statements aren’t categorical, it’s because they cannot state with certainty that "polonium was the cause of death". For his part, British professor, David Barclay is more definitive. When consulted by the Qatari channel al-Jazeera, he stated, "In my opinion, it is absolutely certain that the cause of (Yasser Arafat’s) illness was polonium poisoning".

In November 2012, eight years after his death outside Paris, the body of Yasser Arafat was exhumed in Ramallah. Following this, twenty samples were taken for an inquest to determine if, as many Palestinians think, he died of poisoning. Distinct samples were entrusted to teams of French and Swiss medical examiners, as well as a team of Russian experts, invited by the Palestinians. The judges in charge of the French inquest have not yet received the results of the report carried out by French team. No autopsy was performed at the time of death and the French doctors treating him were declared incapable of determining the cause of death.

A Political Assassination

"We are revealing a real crime, a political assassination", Suha Arafat told Reuters after receiving a report from the Institute of Radiation in Lausanne. This report provides support to the theory she has been championing for several years, stating, "It is scientifically proved that he didn’t die a natural death and we have scientific proof that this man was killed." Suha Arafat has not, however, accused any specific country or individual, but underlined that the historic leader of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) had many enemies. After all, he signed the 1993 Oslo interim peace accords and later led the uprising in 2001 when other negotiations fell through. On the other hand, Wasel Abu Yousef, a member of the PLO’s executive committee, openly accused Israel in a press release. He believes that these results are proof that Arafat was the "victim of a premeditated terrorist assassination committed by a State, Israel, who sought to get rid of him".

"Who has their hands on the money Arafat controlled?"

The Israeli government has denied any responsibility for the death. Yigal Palmor, the Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman said, "This is more soap opera than science. It’s just the latest episode in this soap opera where Suha Arafat opposes Arafat’s successors". Ranaan Gissin, the former spokesman and advisor to Ariel Sharon, affirmed that Israel didn’t want Arafat’s death. In fact, he emphasised that "Sharon allowed Arafat to be evacuated to a French hospital when it was discovered he was dying". "Rather than levelling unfounded accusations at Israel, Palestinians would do better to question those in Arafat’s circle who had a vested interest in his disappearance, and above all who has their hands on the money Arafat controlled", he concluded.


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