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Poisoned or not? Developments since Arafat's death

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(GlobalPost/GlobalPost)

Developments since Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat's mysterious death in 2004, after French experts ruled out a theory that he was poisoned.

-- 2004 --

- November 11: Arafat dies aged 75 at a military hospital outside Paris and is buried the following day at his headquarters in the West Bank town of Ramallah. Arafat had been airlifted to France for treatment of a mysterious blood disorder. The French doctors treating him do not say what caused his death.

- November 14: The French health minister denies that Arafat has been poisoned, following rumours Israel was behind the death.

- November 22: Arafat's nephew obtains a copy of his medical dossier, which reveals no trace of poisoning.

-- 2012 --

- July 3: The findings of laboratory research carried out in Switzerland and cited in an Al-Jazeera report show that Arafat was poisoned by polonium.

- July 31: Arafat's widow and daughter launch a civil suit for murder against persons unknown in the Paris suburb of Nanterre.

- August 28: French prosecutors open a murder enquiry into Arafat's death.

- November 27: Arafat's remains are exhumed in the presence of Swiss, French and Russian and samples taken for testing.

-- 2013 --

- November 7: Swiss experts say tests provided "moderate" backing for the idea Arafat was poisoned by polonium, a rare and highly radioactive element.

- November 17: Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas calls for an international inquiry to decide who was responsible for the death.

- November 26: Israeli President Shimon Peres rejects theories that Arafat was poisoned, saying that any assassin would have found it easier to shoot him.

- December 3: French experts rule out a theory that Arafat was killed by poisoning, a source close to the investigation says.

Israel says it is "not surprised" at the report.

A Palestinian team that investigated Arafat's death expresses reservations over the report.

Arafat's widow Suha says she is "shattered" by experts' disagreement on the death.

acm/frd/jmy/jmm

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/131203/poisoned-or-not-developments-arafats-death-0