Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas (C) waves as he is escorted out of the Istishari Hospital in the West Bank city of Ramallah on October 6, 2016, following his discharge. AFP / ABBAS MOMANI
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Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas received a clean bill of health Thursday after an emergency heart procedure.Abbas, leader of the Fatah Party, was elected president of the Palestinian Authority in 2005 in what was supposed to be a four-year term.Abbas has remained in control of parts of the West Bank ever since, while no national elections have been held.Here are some possible successors to Abbas:SAEB EREKAT, 61The veteran Palestinian negotiator with Israel is seen as Abbas' closest aide and favored successor, having displayed unwavering loyalty to the Palestinian leader. Late last year, Abbas appointed Erekat as secretary-general of the Palestine Liberation Organization, the same position Abbas once used as a springboard to the presidency following the death of Arafat in November 2004 . BARGHOUTI, 57The Palestinian uprising leader, who is serving multiple life terms in an Israeli prison, is expected to run for president from his cell once Abbas is out of the picture, according to his inner circle.At a time when two-thirds of Palestinians want Abbas to resign, opinion polls suggest Barghouti would handily defeat a Hamas challenger, such as former Gaza-based Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, in presidential elections.
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