PFLP urges Hamas to hold local elections
Published Thursday 26/07/2012 (updated) 31/07/2012 18:46
Abbas' Palestinian Authority has announced that it would hold
elections on Oct. 20
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) -- The Palestinian Front for the Liberation of Palestine on Thursday called on Hamas to hold local elections in the Gaza Strip, an official said.
"We call on Hamas to think seriously about holding elections in Gaza," PFLP leader Jamil Mizhir told Ma'an. "There must be another chance given to the people to choose who will represent them in offering services."
Mizher called on Hamas to participate in the elections and consider the interests of the Palestinian people above all other concerns, adding that elections are the beginning of ending the political split.
"We, the PFLP, are for democratic elections as a guarantee to provide people’s needs in general. The PFLP is eager to participate in the elections because we consider it as the democratic starting point to the make progress in all Palestinian organizations," he added.
The minister of local government, Khalid Qawasmi, on Thursday told Ma'an that the PA has given Hamas two weeks to rethink its position on holding local elections.
Abbas' Palestinian Authority announced on July 10 that it would hold elections on Oct. 20, a decision denounced by Gaza's Hamas rulers who said the "unilateral step" undermined reconciliation.
Earlier, Hamas had suspended voter registration in the Gaza Strip.
"The elections are a legal and political entitlement and there is no need to link it to national reconciliation," Qawasmi said.
As part of a May 2011 reconciliation deal, the parties pledged to prepare for fresh elections to unite the Gaza Strip and West Bank, under rival administrations since 2007.
Hamas called off electoral registration in the Gaza Strip in early July, a day before the process was set to start, citing political partiality concerns and highlighting repression of its members in the West Bank.