Arafat poison findings sent to Palestinians

Official says it will study findings from commission probing former PLO leader's death before releasing statement.

    Yasser Arafat died nine years ago [Reuters]
    Yasser Arafat died nine years ago [Reuters]

    A Palestinian official says the commission probing the death of Yasser Arafat has received long-awaited test results from a Swiss laboratory. 

    Tawfik Tirawi said the report was received Tuesday in Geneva. He said the results will be studied before they are made public. 

    The longtime Palestinian leader died at a French hospital in 2004, but the cause of death has never been determined. Many Palestinians believe Israel poisoned Arafat, an allegation that Israel denies.

    Last year, a Swiss lab discovered traces of polonium-210, a deadly radioactive isotope, on clothes provided by Arafat's widow. More samples were subsequently taken from his remains in the West Bank.

    Polonium disintegrates rapidly, and experts have cautioned that too much time may have passed to reach a conclusive result.

    A peer-reviewed report was published by the Lancet journal in the UK last month, supporting evidence that suggested he was poisoned with polonium.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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