Fatah: Elections date to be announced soon, Abbas is our candidate
Published Sunday 27/04/2014 (updated) 28/04/2014 10:00
NABLUS (Ma'an) -- Fatah said on Sunday that current Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas is the movement's choice for presidential candidate, and that within the next few days he would set a date for upcoming elections.
The statements come only days after Hamas and Fatah signed a historic national reconciliation agreement, reuniting the two largest Palestinian political parties in a consensus government for the first time in seven years.
Secretary-general of the Revolutionary Council of the Fatah movement Amin Maqboul told Ma'an on Sunday that in the coming days, Abbas would issue two presidential decrees. The first will announce the establishment of a unity government, and the second will set a date for Palestinian Authority presidential and parliamentary elections, as well as PLO National Council elections.
Maqboul said that Fatah's Revolutionary Council decided more than a year ago that Abbas would be the party's candidate in upcoming elections, despite the leader's own insistence in the past that he would not stand for re-election.
Maqboul added that Fatah leaders would hold a meeting in the coming few days to study the decision in light of the reconciliation agreement with Hamas and the fact that presidential elections are nearing.
"The unity government will be headed by president Abbas, but if Fatah decides that Abbas will run for presidential elections, his vice president will head the government, according to the law," Maqboul said.
Maqboul said that Fatah leaders knew that Abbas did not want to run, but insisted that as a public figure broader interests had to be taken into account.
Maqboul added that the Fatah movement will make a final decision on that issue soon.
The Palestine Liberation Organization is an umbrella organization that is the internationally recognized representative of the Palestinian people around the world and includes a wide variety of political parties.
The Palestinian Authority, meanwhile, emerged as a result of the Oslo Accords in the 1990s in order to administer the occupied Palestinian territories, and was intended to form the backbone of the Palestinian state.