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Palestinian doctors: Septuagenarian died of stress-induced heart attack after detention

Palestinian doctors have determined that 78-year-old Omar As’ad, who died after being detained by Israeli soldiers in mid-January, perished from a stress-induced heart attack likely caused by the circumstances of his detention.

According to an official Palestinian Authority autopsy obtained by The Times of Israel, As’ad’s death was caused by “stress-induced cardiac arrest due to external injuries.” The autopsy lists several such injuries, including “bruises and abrasions” caused by the elderly As’ad’s hands being bound.

As’ad, a Palestinian-American retiree living in Jiljilya near Ramallah, was detained by Israeli soldiers as he drove through his hometown at 3 a.m. According to the Israeli army, As’ad “resisted a security check.”

Omar As’ad. (Courtesy)

Soldiers bound As’ad’s hands and blindfolded him. An hour later, As’ad was found dead of a heart attack in a half-constructed building and Israeli troops had left the scene. Palestinians say that the soldiers saw that As’ad was unresponsive but left anyway; the Israeli military says he was released before he died.

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