Palestinian Leader Mahmoud Abbas Hospitalized Again

May 20, 2018 Updated: May 20, 2018

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas was hospitalized due to complications after minor surgery.

This is the third time the 83-year-old has been hospitalized in the past week.

According to officials, the most recent visit was due to a “very high temperature.”

A source in the Palestinian Authority (PA) earlier said that the leader was suffering from chest pains. “It might be pneumonia,” the source was quoted by the Times of Israel as saying. “He’s being examined at the hospital.”

Saeb Erekat, an official in the PA, said that he spoke to Abbas on Sunday, describing his condition as “good,” adding that he’ll leave the hospital Monday or Tuesday, the Times of Israel also reported. Later, a source at the hospital said that he’d be discharged Monday, the paper reported.

“The president will stay in hospital until tomorrow. He is being given antibiotics to treat an inflammation in the chest,” the hospital source told the Reuters news agency.

“He’s currently admitted in the hospital. There is no connection between his arrival at the hospital (Saturday) to receive the results of the tests on his ear and his arrival (Sunday), despite the short time between the two,” another source told Ynet News. Another Palestinian source said that Abbas “suffers from pneumonia and fever.” A director at the Ramallah private hospital where he’s staying said that Abbas has been “undergoing (medical) tests since the morning,” but he didn’t disclose the nature of the testing involved.

Earlier in the week, Abbas dismissed rumors about his declining health. Abbas, who is a heavy smoker, has had a history of health problems, including prostate cancer about a decade ago. Last summer, he shot down rumors that he had a stroke.

In February, Abbas was hospitalized in the United States due to medical checks during a trip to address the U.N. Security Council in New York City, Reuters noted.

Abbas hasn’t designated a successor should he die, and Palestinians haven’t held elections since 2005 due to a split between the Hamas terrorist group, based in Gaza, and Abbas’ Fatah party.

Abbas became president following the death of Yasser Arafat in 2004.

Other details about his hospitalization were not revealed.


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