Arafat’s body returns


His coffin, draped in the Palestinian flag, was taken to a military airport, where a ceremony attended by members of the French government was held.

The plane carrying his body then took off for Cairo, where his funeral will be held on Friday.

The Palestinian Authority has declared 40 days of mourning.

As a military band played a funeral march, Mr Arafat’s coffin was carried by a guard of honour to an Airbus plane bearing the livery of the French republic.