Arafat’s Death Likely Not Due to Polonium: French Analysts

Global Security Newswire Staff
Add to Briefcase
See more stories about...
Global Security Newswire Staff
Dec. 3, 2013, 7:02 a.m.

A new re­port by French forensic in­vest­ig­at­ors plays down the pos­sib­il­ity that former Palestini­an lead­er Yass­er Ara­fat was as­sas­sin­ated through ex­pos­ure to ra­dio­act­ive po­loni­um, des­pite earli­er sus­pi­cions, the BBC re­por­ted on Tues­day.

The new as­sess­ment as­serts that a “gen­er­al­ized in­fec­tion” was prob­ably re­spons­ible for Ara­fat’s 2004 de­mise. The Palestini­an Lib­er­a­tion Front lead­er died in a French mil­it­ary hos­pit­al after ex­per­i­en­cing a severe stroke, which phys­i­cians at­trib­uted at the time to a blood ail­ment of un­cer­tain ori­gin.

Ara­fat’s re­mains were un­earthed last year so tis­sue samples could be re­moved and trans­ferred for labor­at­ory test­ing in Europe. The latest de­term­in­a­tion out of France came less than a month after a Swiss ex­perts re­por­ted a “mod­er­ate” pos­sib­il­ity that Ara­fat was de­lib­er­ately poisoned with po­loni­um. The lat­ter find­ings cited in­dic­a­tions that the lead­er’s body con­tained a sig­ni­fic­ant quant­ity of the sub­stance at the time of his death.

Mean­while, the Palestini­an head of a re­lated probe on Tues­day said he is on the cusp of as­sign­ing form­al blame for the death, Re­u­ters re­por­ted. In­vest­ig­a­tion lead­er Taw­fiq Tir­awi last month called Is­rael the “only sus­pect” in the pos­sible killing, though the na­tion as­serts it had no in­volve­ment.

This art­icle was pub­lished in Glob­al Se­cur­ity News­wire, which is pro­duced in­de­pend­ently by Na­tion­al Journ­al Group un­der con­tract with the Nuc­le­ar Threat Ini­ti­at­ive. NTI is a non­profit, non­par­tis­an group work­ing to re­duce glob­al threats from nuc­le­ar, bio­lo­gic­al, and chem­ic­al weapons.

What We're Following See More »
Trump Still on Campaign Rhetoric
1 hours ago
Trump Rails On Obamacare
1 hours ago

After spending a few minutes re-litigating the Democratic primary, Donald Trump turned his focus to Obamacare. “I inherited a mess, believe me. We also inherited a failed healthcare law that threatens our medical system with absolute and total catastrophe” he said. “I’ve been watching and nobody says it, but Obamacare doesn’t work.” He finished, "so we're going to repeal and replace Obamacare."

Trump Goes After The Media
1 hours ago

Donald Trump lobbed his first attack at the “dishonest media” about a minute into his speech, saying that the media would not appropriately cover the standing ovation that he received. “We are fighting the fake news,” he said, before doubling down on his previous claim that the press is “the enemy of the people." However, he made a distinction, saying that he doesn't think all media is the enemy, just the "fake news."

Steve Beshear to Give Democratic Response on Tuesday
2 hours ago
Report: Trump Asked FBI to Deny Russia Stories
2 hours ago

"The FBI rejected a recent White House request to publicly knock down media reports about communications between Donald Trump's associates and Russians known to US intelligence during the 2016 presidential campaign, multiple US officials briefed on the matter tell CNN. But a White House official said late Thursday that the request was only made after the FBI indicated to the White House it did not believe the reporting to be accurate."


Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.