Category Archives: International

Yasser Arafat’s body to be exhumed after eight years as his wife calls for murder investigation

via Daily Mail



  • Operation on Arafat, who died in 2004, will take place on November 24
  • Pressure from his widow Suha who believes he was poisoned has forced the issue

French officials will exhume former Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat’s remains next month in a bid to discover if he was murdered.

A team of medical and forensic experts will arrive in the West Bank city of Ramallah on November 24 to carry out the gruesome operation.

The exhumation comes after Arafat’s widow Suha asked judges in France this summer to launch a murder probe into her husband’s death.

Investigation: Yasser Arafat (right) in 2004 with his wife Suha who alleges he was poisonedInvestigation: Yasser Arafat (right) in 2004 with his wife Suha who alleges he was poisoned

Mrs Arafat, 48, believes her husband’s death at a Paris hospital eight years ago was caused by the radioactive toxin polonium.

She claims he was poisoned because he was an ‘obstacle to peace’.


Mrs Arafat launched her legal action after Swiss scientists who analysed her husband’s belongings said in June that they found ‘surprisingly high’ levels of the lethal substance on his clothes.

Palestinian authorities have now given final approval for Arafat’s body to be exhumed so further tests can be carried out.

Polonium-210 was also used to kill former Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko in London in 2006.

Poisoned: Alexander Litvinenko was killed by polonium-210 in 2006Poisoned: Alexander Litvinenko was killed by polonium-210 in 2006

Mrs Arafat’s lawyer Pierre-Olivier Sud told the French media: ‘Suha Arafat hopes that the authorities will be able to establish the exact circumstances of her husband’s death and uncover the truth, so that justice can be done.

‘She and her family want the truth and nothing but the truth. There is no question of any ideological or political exploitation.’

Mrs Arafat also told arabic TV channel Al Jazeera in July that both the US and Israel had regarded her husband as ‘an obstacle to peace’.

She added: ‘I want the world to know the truth about the assassination of Yasser Arafat.’

Scene of the crime? Percy military hospital, where Mr Arafat diedScene of the crime? Percy military hospital, where Mr Arafat died

Arafat had been confined by Israel to his headquarters in Ramallah when he fell ill in October 2004.

He was jetted to the Percy military hospital near Paris, telling aides before he left: ‘God willing, I will be back.’

But less than a month after arriving, he slipped into a coma and died on November 11th, 2004.

Doctors who treated him said at the time he may have died of a blood clotting disorder and ruled out poisoning.

French daily Le Monde reported at the time that it had ‘very good sources’ who had revealed he died of a condition called disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC).

In mourning: Suha Arafat with then French Prime Minister Jean Pierre Raffarin (right) at the funeralIn mourning: Suha Arafat with then French Prime Minister Jean Pierre Raffarin (right) at the funeral

It described the condition as ‘the complete disruption of the mechanisms which normally assure proper blood clotting and can lead to major internal bleeding and possible death’.

The paper quoted one doctor as saying: ‘We also worked on the question of poisoning, using sophisticated techniques, before concluding with a negative.’


The 10 Best Countries For Growing A Business [RANKED]

via Business Insider: 



Management consulting firm Grant Thornton recently released a ranking of countries by how well they encourage “dynamic growth” for businesses. 

We caught up with Stephen Chipman, CEO of Grant Thornton U.S., who says that “dynamism can be largely defined by a business’ ability to act with speed, agility and flexibility. It’s about an organization’s knack to move relatively fast in a productive manner, to grow, to take action without significant barriers — internal or external — getting in the way.”

It’s not all about the economy. A variety of factors went into the model, including the availability of private credit, the regulatory environment, and support for research and development.

The U.S. barely makes the list at #10.


10. The United States

Dynamism score: 64.1

Strongest area: The United States has the world’s eighth-best financing environment.

While strong in many areas, the U.S. doesn’t come out front in any. Polarized politics and sluggish growth are holding the country back.

Source: Grant Thornton LLC

9. Germany

Dynamism score: 64.8

Strongest area: Germany comes in ninth for science and technology.

A center of manufacturing, engineering, and organizational expertise, Germany has stayed strong through the Euro crisis.

Source: Grant Thornton LLC

8. Korea

Dynamism score: 64.9

Strongest area: Ranked fourth in science and technology

Korea’s large, vertically integrated conglomerates help it stay in front in terms of technological innovation.

Source: Grant Thornton LLC

7. Switzerland

Dynamism score: 64.1

Strongest area: Switzerland comes in fifth for science and technology.

High quality infrastructure and the presence of some of the world’s leading engineering firms make Switzerland very appealing.

Source: Grant Thornton LLC

6. Australia

Dynamism score: 65.6

Strongest area: Australia comes in seventh for business operating environment, and labor and human capital

Students in Australia and neighboring New Zealand spent more time being educated than any other country in the survey.

Source: Grant Thornton LLC

5. Austria

5. Austria

Dynamism score: 66.1

Strongest area: Austria came in 4th place for its financing environment

Despite Euro area troubles, Austria manages to provide liquidity and a favorable regulatory environment to businesses.

Source: Grant Thornton LLC

4. Israel

Dynamism score: 69.3

Strongest area: Israel has the world’s most dynamic science and technology environment

Despite its tiny size, Israel has the third most companies listed on the NASDAQ in the world.

Source: Grant Thornton LLC

3. Sweden

Dynamism score: 69.6

Strongest area: Sweden came in third for both business environment and science and technology.

Sweden has an open and transparent business environment, strongly supports research and development, and has world class IT infrastructure.

Source: Grant Thornton LLC

2. Finland

Dynamism score: 70.5

Strongest area: Finland has the world’s best operating environment for businesses

Finland’s extremely open economy and its transparent regulatory and competitive environment make it a great place to grow a business.

Source: Grant Thornton LLC

1. Singapore

Dynamism score: 72.1

Strongest area: Singapore has the world’s best financing environment.

Light regulation, low corporate taxes, access to fast growing Asian markets, and readily available private credit get Singapore the number one ranking.

Source: Grant Thornton LLC