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Palestinian factions agree to hold elections

The head of Hamas’ Political Bureau, Ismail Haniyeh (R) shakes hands with the head of the Elections Commission, Hanna Nasser (L), during a meeting in Gaza City.

Ruba Shabit
Press TV, Gaza 

Hamas, representing Gaza-based political factions, and the Palestinian Central Election Commission have signed an agreement in Gaza to hold general elections.

The agreement was announced following a meeting between the head of Hamas’ Political Bureau, Ismail Haniyeh and the head of the Election Commission, Hanna Nasser.

Hamas says it is ready to hold non-synchronized parliamentary and presidential elections.

The agreement is considered as a significant step towards reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah which are the two dominant Palestinian political factions.

Observers believe the reconciliation and holding general elections in Palestinian territories will be to the benefit of all Palestinians, especially those living in the Gaza Strip and help Palestinians take a united stance against Israel.

The Palestinian leadership has been divided between Fatah and Hamas since 2006, when the latter scored a landslide victory in parliamentary elections in the Gaza Strip. Hamas has ever since been running the coastal enclave, while Fatah has been based in the West Bank.

Hamas says it is ready to advance the elections and offer full flexibility in order to achieve Palestinian national unity. Many hope the developments will set the stage for the first Palestinian general elections since 2006. 

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