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Palestinian Coroner’s Report Complicates Efforts to Blame Israel for Minister’s Death

The official Palestinian-led pathology report on PA Minister Ziad Abu Ein’s death suggests he died from a stress-induced heart attack, contradicting Palestinian claims that his death was a direct result of IDF actions.

Abu Ein, a Palestinian Authority official, collapsed and died in the afternoon hours of Wednesday after confronting soldiers at a demonstration in the West Bank. An IDF paramedic attempted to treat Abu Ein, but treatment was refused by Palestinians who instead carried Abu Ein away and transported him to a regional hospital.

Before the publication of autopsy results, Palestinian Civil Affairs Minister Hussein al-Sheikh claimed Abu Ein (55) died as a result of the combination of injury, inhalation of tear gas and the delay in receiving medical treatment.

However, the autopsy findings contradicted al-Sheiks’s account, with the official report saying the death was the result of blockage in the coronary artery and that “there were signs of light internal bleeding and localized pressure on the neck,” Ynet reported.

The report, being led by Palestinian, Jordanian and Israeli pathologists, said the death was caused by blockage in the coronary artery, and said there were signs of light internal bleeding and localized pressure on the neck…

According to the report, the deceased suffered from heart disease, and there was evidence that plaque buildup was clogging more than 80% of his blood vessels, as well as signs that he had suffered heart attacks in the past.

Abu Ein was not a cabinet minister, but was formerly the P.A.’s deputy minister for prisoner affairs. He was also a convicted terrorist who was sentenced to life imprisonment for his involvement in a 1979 bombing that killed two Israeli teenagers and wounded 36 others. He fled to the U.S. but was extradited to Israel where he stood trial for murder, but was released from his life sentence in a 1985 exchange that saw 1,150 terrorists and security prisoners swapped for three Israelis.

Abu Ein’s death has prompted scores of Palestinians to try and escalate the violence by throwing rocks and hurling burning tires at an IDF outpost at the Cave of Patriarchs in Hebron. Security forces responded with riot control methods.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas warned Israel on Wednesday that “all options are open” for a Palestinian response to the death of Abu Ein.

[Photo: Amar Karbouch / Youtube]