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Senior Palestinian officials form committee to run Authority for critically-ill Arafat

[JURIST] A spokesman from the office of Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat said late Wednesday that a three person committee has been formed to manage Palestinian affairs while the Palestinian leader is being treated by doctors. Arafat, who has been suffering from a variety of afflictions, including heart trouble and gallstones, took ill early Wednesday and collapsed later in the day; his condition is said to be "very, very serious." According to the Jerusalum Post a Palestinian cabinet minister Wednesday night said “President Arafat is dying.” The committee to take up Arafat's duties consists of Palestinian Prime Minister Ahmed Qureia, his predecessor Mahmoud Abbas and the head of the Palestinian National Council Salim Zaanoun. AP has more; the Jerusalem Post provides local coverage and the latest bulletins. The official website for the Palestinian president is here.

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