The Life of Yasser Arafat
For more than three decades, Yasser Arafat, head of the Palestinian Authority, has been synonymous with the struggle for Palestinian statehood. He was born in 1929 in Cairo into a textile merchant's family with Palestinian roots, although he claimed to have been born in Jerusalem. He spent his childhood in Cairo and Jerusalem and in 1947 studied at Cairo University, where he became involved in Arab nationalist causes. He also helped smuggle weapons to Palestinian guerrillas fighting the British. Here are more key events in his life and career.