Palestinian leaders health scares spark succession talk

RAMALLAH – A series of recent health scares have raised concerns about octogenarian President Mahmoud Abbas, reviving anxiety about a potentially chaotic succession battle bound to further weaken the Palestinian cause.


Officials say a cardiologist has moved into the presidential compound in Ramallah to monitor the longtime leader, following a mysterious hospital visit in the United States after Abbas appeared weak in an address to the UN Security Council.


Abbas is a heavy smoker with long-standing heart problems who turns 83 next week. He insists he is fine. But after more than a decade of avoiding discussion of the post-Abbas era, Palestinian officials acknowledge that they are concerned, and potential successors are quietly jockeying for position.


The officials all spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss Abbas' health issues.


פרסום ראשון: 03.22.18, 08:16