Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas announced plans to hold parliamentary and presidential elections for the first time in nearly 15 years, as did the Palestinians She seeks to rebuild her relationships With President-elect Joe Biden after a disagreement with the Trump administration.
The Palestinians tried several times to hold elections in the past decade, but each attempt was thwarted by challenges, including Sharp splits Between Fatah, the party that largely controls the Palestinian Authority that rules the West Bank, and Hamas, the armed Palestinian movement that controls Gaza.
However, the decree issued Friday night by 85-year-old Mr. Abbas, who is in the 16th year of the four-year period he won in 2005, was the furthest Palestinians had reached legally to hold national elections in a decade and a half.
The Palestinian leader’s decree set legislative elections on May 22 and presidential elections on July 31. The elections for the Palestinian National Council, which represents Palestinians abroad, were scheduled for August 31.
The proposal is part of a broader effort to bridge internal divisions within the Palestinian leadership. The issue of Palestinian unity increased in importance to followers of Hamas and Fatah Abraham Agreements Mediated by AmericaWhich witnessed, since last September, Israel normalizing relations with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Sudan and Morocco. For decades, the Palestinians have relied on their Arab allies to stop normalizing relations with Israel until Israel reconciles with them.