PLO's Erekat on ventilator, with COVID

Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat -- one of the most visible Palestinian leaders for decades -- is now on a ventilator and placed into medically induced coma over his COVID infection.

His hospital says his condition is, quote, "defined as critical."

Erekat was rushed to Jerusalem's Hadassah Medical Center on Sunday from his home in the occupied West Bank. He contracted the coronavirus on October 8.

The 65-year-old is considered especially vulnerable to the illness because he underwent a lung transplant in the United States in 2017, which suppressed his immune system.

Hadassah spokeswoman Hadar Elboim also said Erekat was being treated for a bacterial infection as well.

Erekat is a senior adviser to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

A proponent of a two-state solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Erekat has been a leading Palestinian voice in opposing Israel's settlement policy in territory it captured in the 1967 Middle East war.

Video Transcript

- Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat, one of the most visible Palestinian leaders for decades, is now on a ventilator and placed into a medically induced coma over his COVID infection. His hospital says his condition is, quote, "defined as critical."

Erekat Hart was rushed to Jerusalem's Hadassah Medical Center on Sunday from his home in the occupied West Bank. He contracted the coronavirus on October 8. The 65-year-old is considered especially vulnerable to the illness, because he underwent a lung transplant in the United States in 2017, which suppressed his immune system. Hadassah spokeswoman Hadar Elboim also said Erekat was being treated for a bacterial infection.

Erekat is a senior advisor to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. A proponent of a two-state solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Erekat has been a leading Palestinian voice in opposing Israel's settlement policy in territory it captured in the 1967 Middle East war.