Hamas: Abbas should issue elections decree soon

Hamas leader says PA chairman should issue decree for holding elections and thus force Israel to permit them in eastern Jerusalem.

Elad Benari ,

Mahmoud Abbas
Mahmoud Abbas
Flash 90

Hamas on Wednesday called on Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas to issue a presidential decree for holding general elections soon.

Salah al-Bardawil, a senior Hamas leader in Gaza, told a news conference that Abbas has to issue the decree and impose it on Israel to permit the election to be held in eastern Jerusalem as well.

"We agreed that there will be no elections without holding it in Jerusalem, and there is no single Palestinian will go to vote without Jerusalem," he said, according to the Xinhua news agency.

Al-Bardawil stressed that "issuing the elections decree would impose Israel to accept holding it in Jerusalem," adding that "we should turn the question of holding the elections in Jerusalem as political clash with Israel."

The senior Hamas leader stressed that Palestinian Arabs "will be able to push Israel to hold it in Jerusalem and defeat the decision of American President Donald Trump on Jerusalem."

Abbas recently renewed a pledge to hold fresh parliamentary elections in the PA, which have not been held since 2006 when Hamas won an overwhelming majority.

However, Abbas has refrained from calling the election until Israel approves holding them for Arabs residing in eastern Jerusalem as well.

On Tuesday, the PA chairman stressed that issuing a presidential decree for holding elections is dependent on whether they could be held also in eastern Jerusalem.

Abbas' term as PA chairman was meant to expire in 2009, but he has remained in office in the absence of elections.