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Palestinian official Saeb Erekat ‘in critical condition’

Mr Erekat has been one of the Palestinians’ most recognisable faces over the past 30 years, serving as their senior negotiator during peace talks.

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Saeb Erekat (Jacquelyn Martin/AP)

Saeb Erekat (Jacquelyn Martin/AP)

Saeb Erekat (Jacquelyn Martin/AP)

Senior Palestinian official Saeb Erekat is in a critical condition and breathing with a ventilator due to Covid-19, according to the Israeli hospital treating him.

Hadassah Medical Centre described Mr Erekat’s case as extremely challenging given his history of health problems, including a lung transplant performed three years ago.

It said he suffered from a weak immune system and a bacterial infection in addition to Covid-19.

It added Mr Erekat, 65, was sedated and that its most senior doctors were consulting with international experts on how best to manage such a complicated case.

Mr Erekat has been one of the Palestinians’ most recognisable faces over the past 30 years, serving as their senior negotiator during on-again, off-again peace talks.

He was also a top aide to late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and current Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

A fluent English speaker, Western-educated Mr Erekat also makes frequent appearances in the media.

He was transferred to Hadassah on Sunday at the request of the Palestinian Authority.

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