Palestinian leaders vote for the first time in 15 years, hoping for a heel rift with the US


Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas announced plans for parliamentary and presidential elections for the first time in nearly 15 years, as Palestinians tried to rebuild their ties with President-Elect Joe Biden after falling out with the Trump administration .

Palestinians have tried several times in the last decade to hold elections, but each effort has been beset by challenges, including a sharp split between Fatah, the party that controls the Palestinian Authority controlling the West Bank, and Hamas, One controls the Palestinian terrorist group. Controls Gaza.

Nevertheless, the decree issued Friday night by 85-year-old Mr. Abbas, the 16th year of the four-year term he won in 2005, saw the farthest Palestinians legally hold national elections in a decade Were and half.

The Palestinian leader’s decree set legislative elections for May 22 and presidential elections for July 31. Elections to the Palestinian National Council, which represents Palestinians abroad, were scheduled for 31 August.

The proposal is part of a broader effort within the Palestinian leadership to heal internal scholars. The issue of Palestinian unity has increased for both Hamas and Fatah since the US-brokered Abraham Accord, which since last September saw Israel normalizing relations with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Sudan and Morocco. For decades, Palestinians have counted on their Arab allies to normalize relations with Israel until Israel made peace with them.

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