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Reports On Arafat's Condition Differ

4 November 2004 -- There are conflicting reports about the health of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat.

French physician Christian Estripeau denied reports by news media and Luxembourg Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker saying that Arafat has died in a French military hospital near Paris.

Juncker later retracted his statement that Arafat is clinically dead.

Palestinian Prime Minister Ahmed Qurie also denied the reports. Qurie said he had recently spoken to officials in Paris and that Arafat is still being treated in an intensive care unit.

Arafat has been treated for an unspecified ailment in the French military hospital since 29 October.

According to the only official bulletin on Arafat's health, he is suffering from an elevated white blood cell count and persistent problems of digestion.

Earlier today, French President Jacques Chirac visited Arafat at the hospital.