Palestinian leader Arafat’s health worsens |

Palestinian leader Arafat’s health worsens

Associated Press Writer

RAMALLAH, West Bank (AP) – Yasser Arafat’s health worsened Wednesday and a team of doctors went to his compound to examine the Palestinian leader, according to a Palestinian official close to Arafat. Officials described his condition as serious.

Prime Minister Ahmed Qureia and former Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas were summoned to the 75-year-old Arafat’s bedside and met alone with him in his room, one official said. Many other Palestinian officials arrived at the Ramallah compound and milled around the courtyard outside.

Israeli officials said Arafat’s wife, Suha, who lives in Paris, was coming to Ramallah on Thursday.

Hassan Abu Libdeh, the Palestinian Cabinet secretary, told CNN by telephone from Ramallah that Arafat was in “critical condition” but was conscious and doctors examining him don’t think he needs to be moved immediately to a hospital.

Another senior Palestinian official, who was in the room with Arafat, told AP he was in “serious condition.”