Palestine election commission formally calls off polls

Move is intended to derail scheduled Palestinian polls in West Bank, Gaza Strip, Hamas asserts

Palestine election commission formally calls off polls

World Bulletin / News Desk

Palestine’s official electoral commission officially called off Wednesday municipal polls that had been slated to be held in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

The move came one day after the Ramallah-based Palestinian government decided to postpone the vote for four months. 

In a statement, the commission said it would return registration fees paid by the candidates. 

The decision is seen largely as a procedural measure after elections were officially postponed Tuesday. 

Local polls had initially been scheduled for Oct. 8 in both the Israeli-occupied West Bank and the blockaded, Hamas-run Gaza Strip -- but a Ramallah court Monday ruled to hold the vote in the West Bank only. 

The polls would have seen Hamas and Fatah -- Palestine’s two main political movements -- directly compete for the first time in a decade.  

Hamas, for its part, which has governed the Gaza Strip since 2007, blasted the decision to postpone the vote. 

"This decision by the [Ramallah-based] government is intended to prevent the scheduled holding of elections and merely serves the interests of Fatah," Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said Tuesday.


Güncelleme Tarihi: 05 Ekim 2016, 16:42