Latest News:  
Beijing   Cloudy/Sunny    32 / 22 ℃  City Forecast


Israeli officials deny Arafat poisoning rumors


13:08, July 06, 2012

JERUSALEM, July 5 (Xinhua) -- Israeli officials on Thursday quashed recent rumors that late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat died due to radiation poisoning, denying any connection to his death.

Arafat passed away in a French military hospital outside Paris on Nov. 11, 2004. Hospital doctors said the specific cause of death was a massive brain hemorrhage, and Arafat has a blood disease called "disseminated intravascular coagulation," according to the Haaretz daily.

The report said the ailment has a number of causes, including infections, colitis and liver disease.

However, Qatar-based Al-Jazeera reported Tuesday that a Swiss lab hired on behalf of the late Palestinian leader's widow, Suha Arafat, found "small traces" of polonium-210, which is lethal, on several of his garments.

The Arab world is rife with accusations that Arafat did not die a natural death, and that Israel was somehow behind his demise, a charge officials here have vehemently denied.

The Palestinian National Authority (PNA) on Wednesday said it would establish a committee to probe the new claims, and approved exhuming Arafat's body for a forensic test.

However, Israeli Foreign Ministry officials on Thursday derided the reports.

"All of a sudden, Suha's checking her wash basket and discovered clothes that weren't washed for eight years," Deputy Spokesman of Israeli Foreign Ministry Paul Hirschson told Xinhua.

"Suddenly, out of nowhere a couple of garments turn up; we test them, and presto! There's Polonium," he said.

"She's got the medical files; why doesn't she just publish them? " he asked, "I think the Israelis and the Palestinians deserve to know the truth."

The Institute of Radiation Physics in Lausanne, Switzerland, told Israel Army radio that "There may not have been polonium on the clothing eight years ago, when he died."

"The only way to know if the polonium affected him is to take samples from his body," said spokesman D'arsy Christian, according to Israel National News.

Meanwhile, Avi Dichter, who headed the Shin Bet internal security agency at the time of Arafat's death, told Army radio on Wednesday that "Yasser Arafat had many enemies, domestically, abroad. But let them investigate... The Palestinians know well how to investigate what goes on in their house. Let them investigate and find out."

Dichter added that "The body is in their hands. It is in Ramallah and really, all the keys are in their hands."

A government source speaking with Xinhua on Thursday, however, took a different tack.

"The real question is, why is al-Jazeera doing this?" the individual asked on Thursday, noting that "it's an opportunity to be nasty to the Israelis and accuse us of doing horrible things."


Leave your comment0 comments

  1. Name


Selections for you

  1. APF troops conduct comprehensive training

  2. Step one of delivering Chinese liquor culture

  3. Urumqi: A nice day in July

  4. Here comes hot summer in E China

Most Popular


  1. Transition comes before democracy in Myanmar
  2. Vatican’s religious assertions tangled with politics
  3. Steady economy recovery key to int'l co-op
  4. China steps up moves in South China Sea
  5. China, US hold mixed attitudes toward each other
  6. New rules lay foundation for migrant law
  7. Economy on thin ice with suppressed interest rates
  8. China faces long-term regional annoyances
  9. Japan’s space law shift rattles regional nerves
  10. Experts call for an end to dispute over islands

What's happening in China

Lecture on safety education provided to children of migrant workers in NW China

  1. Discipline official to combat financial corruption
  2. China to give private investment preferences
  3. Year's highest flood level surges along Yangtze
  4. Mainland police transfer murder suspect to Taiwan
  5. China to establish unified criminals record system

China Features

  1. China, US hold mixed attitudes toward each other
  2. China does not lack capital: CSRC Chair
  3. Root-seeking culture connects all Chinese
  4. Do not impose interests on world heritage
  5. APF Soldiers in Sichuan in hard training

PD Online Data

  1. Spring Festival
  2. Chinese ethnic odyssey
  3. Yangge in Shaanxi
  4. Gaoqiao in Northern China
  5. The drum dance in Ansai