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Russian Experts in West Bank Ahead of Arafat Exhumation

Russian experts have arrived on the West Bank to take part in the exhumation of former Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat as part of an investigation into his death.

Arafat, who led the Palestinian Liberation Organization for 35 years, died in November 2004 in a military hospital in France.

A probe into his death was initiated by his wife, Sukha Arafat, after traces of radioactive Polonium-210 were detected in his belongings earlier this year.

Three experts invited by the Palestinian national administration will observe the exhumation of Arafat's remains on Tuesday along with teams of forensic scientists from France and Switzerland, RIA-Novosti reported.

The delegation of experts from the Federal Medical and Biological Agency and the Russian Center of Forensic and Medical Expertise will then take samples from Arafat's remains back to Russia, where they will be tested for traces of radioactive material.

The sampling procedure will last one day and be closed to the press "out of respect for the deceased," the news agency reported.

After the samples have been taken, Arafat's body will be reburied on the same day with military honors.

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