Arafat Wasn't Poisoned: Leaked Report

French scientists contradict Swiss counterparts
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 3, 2013 9:32 AM CST
A Palestinian presidential guard stands beside a picture of Yasser Arafat ona roof at the Palestinian Authority headquarters, ahead of the visit of French President Francois Hollande, Nov. 18, 2013.   (AP Photo/Nasser Nasser)

(Newser) – Yasser Arafat probably died of natural causes, a team of French scientists conclude in a report that leaked today to the French media. Specifically, they believe he died after a "generalized infection," the BBC reports. The report seems to fly in the face of a report from a Swiss team that found high amounts of polonium in the former Palestinian leader's body, "moderately supporting" the theory that he was poisoned. And neither of those line up with his official cause of death; 2004 medical records have him dying of a stroke.

Palestinians have long believed that Arafat was poisoned. A Palestinian investigator even announced today that he knew who was responsible, and intended to name the guilty party in the near future, Reuters reports. "I promise that the next press conference will be the last, and will cast into the light of day everyone who perpetrated, took part in or conspired in the matter," the investigator said. "We are in the last 15 minutes of the investigation." (Read more Yasser Arafat stories.)

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