Arafat buried in Ram Allah

Veteran Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat has been laid to rest at his battered Muqata compound in the West Bank town of Ram Allah.

    Thousands of mourners rushed to touch the late leader's coffin

    Shortly after his coffin was lowered on Friday into a marble-and-stone grave, the crowd began a prayer joined by Palestinian leaders, including newly appointed Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) chairman Mahmud Abbas and Prime Minister Ahmad Quraya.

    Arafat had been due to lie in state before the burial, but the programme was disrupted by chaos at the compound, where thousands of mourners surged past security forces.

    "He was buried ahead of time because of the emotion of the crowd. We had no choice," one official said.     

    Wounded by gunfire

    Before the burial,

    thousands of mourners rushed to the coffin and police fired into the air

    to disperse the crowd that held up the removal of his body from the aircraft that flew in from Egypt. 

    Medics said four people were wounded by gunfire in the
    crowd.

    Arafat, who became a Third World liberation icon and won a Nobel Peace Prize, died at the age 75 in a French hospital on Thursday from an undetermined cause. 

    The chaotic scenes in Ram Allah were in sharp contrast to a funeral service earlier at a Cairo air base, where the public was kept away and even some world leaders were mistakenly shut out by overzealous Egyptian guards. 

    A few kilometres from the burial site, an explosion in a car
    killed two people in a reminder of the continuing violence in the region.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    Heron Gate mass eviction: 'We never expected this in Canada'

    Hundreds face mass eviction in Canada's capital

    About 150 homes in one of Ottawa's most diverse and affordable communities are expected to be torn down in coming months

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    In 1959, a year before Nigeria's independence, a 23-year-old student helped colour the country's identity.