Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas leaves hospital after heart test

Abbas (above) has long been reported to be suffering from heart problems, though Palestinian political officials have never confirmed this.
Abbas (above) has long been reported to be suffering from heart problems, though Palestinian political officials have never confirmed this.PHOTO: AFP

RAMALLAH, West Bank (AFP) – Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas was hospitalised on Thursday (Oct 6) for a heart test and later discharged, with the 81-year-old’s health reported to be normal, officials said.

“We have carried out all necessary tests, including a cardiac catheterisation, and the results are all normal,” Said Sarahneh, director of the Istishari Hospital in the West Bank city of Ramallah, told AFP.

Catheterisation involves the insertion of a thin tube into blood vessels.

Abbas was later seen leaving the hospital and thanked waiting reporters. “I am leaving hospital and I am well,” he said.

Palestine Liberation Organisation secretary general Saeb Erekat said the test confirmed that Abbas was in good health.

The longtime Palestinian leader last week attended the funeral of Israeli ex-president and Nobel Peace Prize winner Shimon Peres.

Abbas had negotiated with Peres, who died at 93, and signed the Oslo peace accords of the 1990s along with him.

There has been no Palestinian presidential election since 2005, and Abbas has remained in office despite the expiry of his term.

He has not spoken publicly of a preferred successor.