PA cabinet leader: Abbas will be our candidate in the elections

Mohammad Shtayyeh confirms that PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas will be Fatah’s candidate in the elections expected to be held in July.

Elad Benari ,

Mahmoud Abbas
Mahmoud Abbas
Flash 90

Palestinian Authority (PA) cabinet leader Mohammad Shtayyeh confirmed on Wednesday that PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas will be Fatah’s candidate in the elections expected to be held in July.

"The Fatah movement has unanimously nominated Abbas," Shtayyeh said in an interview with the London-based Al-Araby TV and quoted by the Turkish Anadolu news agency. The interview will air in full on Thursday.

Abbas last week issued a decree ordering general elections in PA-assigned territories.

The decree states that legislative elections will take place on May 22. A “presidential” election will take place on July 31. It sets a deadline of August 31 for establishing the Palestinian National Council.

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

No PA elections have taken place since 2006 and similar initiatives in the past have failed to result in elections.

Abbas has served as the leader of Fatah as PA chairman since 2005.

There has been speculation that Abbas will be challenged in the election by Marwan Barghouti, who is serving several life sentences in Israel for his role in planning terrorist attacks against Israelis.

Hamas, meanwhile, has reportedly decided not to nominate a candidate on its behalf in the election but may support an independent candidate.



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