February 1, 2011
Palestinian government calls for local elections amid Egypt unrest
The Western-backed Palestinian government in the West Bank said Tuesday it will hold local council elections as soon as possible.
The move appeared to be a response to unrest in Egypt, where demonstrators have staged days of mass protests against the authoritarian regime. The Palestinian Authority has not held elections since 2006, leaving the president and parliament members in office after their elected terms ended.
Prime Minister Salam Fayyad’s Cabinet said Tuesday it would set election dates during its next session, probably next week.
Fayyad hopes to hold the vote in both the West Bank and Gaza Strip. But Gaza will likely not participate since it is controlled by the rival Hamas militant group. There was no immediate response from Hamas.
Read more at HAARETZ.com.