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A highly radioactive isotope of Polonium (Po-210) has been linked to high profile political assassinations including former Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, former Turkish president Turgut Ozal, and former KGB officer and political refugee Alexander Litvinenko.

Polonium-210 occurs naturally in very small amounts from uranium decay, but is also produced artificially by showering bismuth with neutron radiation.  The isotope has few practical uses other than as a static eliminator in some manufacturing processes.  It is so toxic that as little as a microgram, if ingested, would be lethal within several days.  The only known stockpiles of polonium-210 reside in major nuclear nations such as Israel, Russia, and the United States.

Further reading:

Yasser Arafat grave dug up for probe of poison suspicion

Why Is Polonium Used in Assassinations?

Poison ‘found’ in exhumed body of former Turkish president Turgut Ozal

Poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko

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  1. Pingback: Study: Arafat May Have Died of Polonium Poisoning | The Secular Jurist

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