Elections will be held in occupied East Jerusalem

‘The Palestinian general elections scheduled for May will not take place if voting in occupied East Jerusalem is not secured’

Ramallah: The Palestinian general elections scheduled for May will not take place if voting in occupied East Jerusalem is not secured, said a top Fatah official.

Speaking to Gulf News, Jamal Muhaisen, a member of the Fatah Central Committee said that the Palestinian presidential, parliamentary elections and elections for the Palestinian National Council will not take place unless they are conducted in occupied East Jerusalem the way they will be conducted in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

“Without occupied East Jerusalem, there will be no elections,” he said.

Muhaisen, who is the Fatah delegation member for Palestinian reconciliation, said that occupied East Jerusalem is the capital of the Palestinian state and it would be nonsense to address the Palestinian general elections without it.

“This is not only Fatah’s stance but the Palestinian national unchanging position,” he said.

“Voting in occupied East Jerusalem took place in the first and second Palestinian elections,” he added.

“Hamas will undoubtedly be part of the coming general elections in Gaza, the West Bank and occupied East Jerusalem,” he said. “Hamas was a part of the Palestinian latest 2006 parliamentary elections where voting then took place in occupied East Jerusalem,” he said.

Pave the way

Hamas actively took part and won a majority in the Palestinian Legislative Council of the 2006 parliamentary elections and established a government which was followed by a Palestinian unity government before it took over the coastal strip of Gaza.

A top Israeli official told the Israeli daily Haaretz that the Israeli government is not likely to allow voting in occupied East Jerusalem if Hamas participates.

A Palestinian source added to the daily that Hamas has made a condition to the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) that it will only agree to hold presidential and parliamentary elections if voting takes place in occupied East Jerusalem and Hamas is allowed to participate in it.

Muhaisen said that the Palestinian factions will start their Cairo meetings on December 18, where the factions will establish a Palestinian government of technocrats where the premier and ministers will be chosen by the factions during the December 20 and 22 meetings.

“This government will pave the way for the Palestinian general elections which will be held all over the Palestinian territories occupied in 1967,” he said.

(gulfnews.com / 08.12.2011)

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