Mahmoud Abbas
Mahmoud Abbas Flash 90

The Palestinian Authority (PA) has extended official invitations to the European Parliament and the European Union (EU), calling them to observe the PA’s upcoming general elections, the Xinhua news agency reports.

Hanna Nasser, chairman of the Palestinian Central Elections Commission (PCEC), said that he has already handed an invitation to the EU Representative in the PA, Sven Kuhn von Burgsdorff, according to the report.

In a press statement, Nasser said that the international observation will guarantee the election's results, urging all international observation bodies to monitor the upcoming elections.

For his part, Burgsdorff appreciated the role of the PCEC and its readiness despite the ongoing challenges, according to the statement.

He stressed that holding general elections is the first step for the Palestinians to put an end to their internal division and restore their democratic life.

PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas earlier this month 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.

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