The Palestinian Authority has agreed to a request from Suha Arafat, widow of Yasser Arafat, to exhume the Palestinian leader’s body to be tested for poisoning. Recently there have been allegations made that Arafat was poisoned with radioactive element polonium -210 in 2004.
This week a Swiss Institute examined clothing provided to the by Suha Arafat as part of an Al-Jazeera expose on Yasser Arafat. They reported that they found a surprisingly high amount of polonium 2010, although they acknowledged that the symptoms Arafat suffered at the time were not consistent with polonium poisoning.
The Palestinian Authority said they would begin the process of bringing Arafat’s body up from his limestone tomb in Ramallah.
Nabil Abu Rdeineh, an aide to current PA chairman Mahmood Abbas said,
“The Authority, as it always has been, is ready to completely cooperate with and clear the way for an investigation into the true causes leading to the martyrdom of the late president,”
Suha Arafat told Al-Jazeera, a Qatar based satellite television station,
“I want the world to know the truth about the assassination of Yasser Arafat,”
The exhumation and testing are sure to revive a strong feeling among Palestinians that Yasser Arafat was assassinated by Israel after peace talks collapsed and fighting claimed the lives of thousand of Jews and Arabs.
Arafat was airlifted to a French Hospital in November of 2004 with a mysterious illness. French authorities have refused to release details of his death citing privacy laws. It is rumored that no official cause of death could be established.