Mahmoud Abbas
Mahmoud AbbasReuters

Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas on Friday 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 issued the decree following a meeting with the head of the electoral committee, according to i24NEWS. He instructed the panel, as well as other appropriate bodies, to begin preparations to a vote in all PA territories, including 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.

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

Abbas pledged to hold parliamentary elections within six months in December of 2018 and did not fulfill that promise.

He renewed a pledge to hold fresh parliamentary elections in the PA in December of 2019, but those elections were never held, either. At the time, the PA chairman demanded that Israel allow the elections to be held in eastern Jerusalem, a request which Israel chose to ignore.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)