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Hamas calls on Abbas to set date for elections

A senior Hamas official has called on Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas to set the date for presidential and parliamentary elections, Anadolu reported today. Mousa Abu-Marzouk announced this on his Facebook page to coincide with a meeting of the Central Council of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO).

He also requested the council to call a meeting in the Gaza Strip for the factions taking part in the reconciliation agreement to have the opportunity to solve all of the problems bedevilling the deal. The member of the Hamas political bureau stressed that the PLO Central Council has to call for the parliament and PLO leadership to convene in order to discuss national political issues and the elections of the more broadly-representative Palestinian National Council.

A Palestinian unity government was sworn in last June after an agreement between Hamas and Fatah. Although Hamas won a parliamentary majority at the last election in 2006, it gave up control of the Gaza Strip on condition that a General Election would be held “within six months”. That has not happened; the unity government has refused to take up its responsibility for Gaza and has done nothing about the elections.

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