World Bulletin / News Desk
Swiss experts have been invited to the West Bank to test Yasser Arafat's remains for possible poisoning, the chief investigator looking into the 2004 death of the Palestinian leader said Wednesday.
Last month, Switzerland's Institute of Radiation Physics said it had detected elevated levels of radioactive polonium-210 on stains on Arafat's clothing, reviving longstanding thinkings in the Arab world that the Palestinian leader was poisoned.
However, the lab said the findings were inconclusive and that only exhuming Arafat's remains could bring possible clarity. Lab officials also said polonium decays quickly and that an autopsy would need to be done within a few months at most. They also said they needed a formal invitation to proceed with testing.
The Arab satellite TV station Al-Jazeera first published the findings of the Swiss lab. The station approached the lab on behalf of Arafat's widow, Suha, who had demanded that her husband's remains be examined and provided the lab with his clothing.
Arafat died in a French military hospital on Nov. 11, 2004, a month after falling sudden ill at his headquarters in the West Bank city of Ramallah, where he spent the last three years of his life under Israeli siege.
"We are currently studying how to adequately respond to this demand," Darcy Christen, a spokesman for the Swiss institute, said Wednesday. "Meanwhile, our main concern is to guarantee the independence, the credibility and the transparency of any possible involvement on our side," she said.
Several senior Palestinian officials, including Arafat nephew Nasser al-Kidwa, have claimed Arafat was poisoned by Israel. Israel denied any involvement.
Palestinian officials have said they want an international probe that has the authority to summon Israeli officials.
The Palestinian Authority also asked the Arab League to help pursue an international investigation. The League has said it would seek a U.N. investigation and would decide on the details in September.
Turkish Historical Society head cites research from past wars
Palestinian president stresses on 2-state solution to conflict, calls East Jerusalem capital
Israeli snipers have killed 39 protesters and injured thousands who posed no threat, says Swiss-based group
Foreign Minister Cavusoglu to address UN General Assembly on Turkey’s contributions, approach to UN efforts
At least 39 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli gunfire near Gaza border
Serbia's ambassador to Ankara says 5 government ministers will accompany Serbian president
He acted quickly -- just a day after decades of Castro rule ended and long time party loyalist Miguel Diaz-Canel assumed power as president.
Multimillion-dollar lawsuit raises issue of hacking of Democratic National Committee’s servers
Syrian regime would be 'ill-advised' to ignore message sent by last week’s allied missile strike, says US Defense Secretary
At least 39 Palestinians have been killed in Israeli interventions since border rallies began March 30
Thursday’s vote make Diaz-Canel first person outside Castro family to rule country in almost 60 years
Syrian regime had no clear picture of what was happening to them, says U.S. general, referring to U.S.-led joint attack
Hamas, Islamic Jihad announced plans earlier to boycott scheduled meeting of PLO’s National Council
Canadian provinces at war over future delivery of oil to Pacific countries
Terrorists killed during operations in Saladin governorate
Decision follows Ecuador’s withdrawal as mediator in talks between Bogota and rebel group