Hamas, Fatah Find Agreement for New Palestinian Elections
Presidential and parliamentary elections for leadership of the Palestinian Authority are soon to be scheduled, President Mahmoud Abbas announced on Saturday. Abbas stated that an agreement with the rival Hamas movement had been reached after he received a letter from Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh on ending the dispute between Hamas and Abbas’ Fatah faction. Abbas reported he had invited the head of the Palestinian Central Elections Commission to meet with him to discuss the elections’ timing and procedures. The last elections for Palestinian leadership were held in 2005 and 2006. Negotiations for holding new elections have continued over the past 14 years with each agreement being scuttled due to issues regarding the troubled relationships between Hamas and Fatah. In his statement, Abbas thanked Egypt, Qatar, Turkey, Russia and Jordan for their efforts in bridging the gap between the two Palestinian sides.