PNA to litigate in ICC if Arafat assassination proved: official

2012-11-27 14:57:44 GMT2012-11-27 22:57:44(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

RAMALLAH, Nov. 27 (Xinhua) -- The Palestinian National Authority (PNA) is intending to litigate in the International Criminal Court (ICC) if late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat is proved to be poisoned, a senior official said Tuesday.

Tawfiq Tirawi, chief of the Palestinian committee to probe the circumstances of Arafat's death, told a news conference in the West Bank city of Ramallah that the PNA will sue "those were behind the assassination" if it is proved that Arafat was poisoned.

Earlier Tuesday, the PNA finalized digging up the remains of Arafat, as Russian, Swiss and French experts took samples of the remains to inspect the reason behind his death.

Arafat died of a mysterious disease in a French military hospital in 2004. The Palestinians suspect that Israel poisoned Arafat when he was besieged in his Ramallah headquarters before falling ill.

"Probing the circumstances of Arafat's death won't stop whether the results of testing the remains are negative or positive," Tirawi told reporters.

Earlier this year, Swiss experts tested Arafat's personal belongings as part of a documentary aired by al-Jazeera, the Doha- based Arab news network. The report cited the Institute of Radiation Physics as saying that traces of radioactive polonium- 210 were found on Arafat's underwear and toothbrush.

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