Election of the Palestinian National Council

Election of the Palestinian National Council


D. Essam Adwan


Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas issued a presidential decree on January 15, 2021 to hold legislative and presidential elections and form a Palestinian National Council.

The last presidential elections of the Palestinian Authority were in 2005. and the elections for the Palestinian Legislative Council in 2006. No Palestinian National Council has been elected since its inception in 1964.


The Palestinian factions have agreed in the reconciliation agreements of 2011 and 2014, 2017 on the holding of elections for the Palestinian National Council to coincide with the elections of the Legislative Council and the presidency of the Palestinian Authority.


The reconciliation agreements indicated that elections for the National Council would be held wherever permitted. A mechanism for compensating for areas where no elections will be held, is then agreed nationally.


The recent presidential decree does not refer to elections for the Palestinian National Council but rather uses the phrase “the formation of the Palestinian National Council shall be completed.”


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The decree considered the PLC elections to be part of the PNC representing Palestinians from the West Bank, Gaza and Jerusalem.


The decree did not authorize the rejection of elections to the National Assembly. The term “formation” accommodates several perceptions, Of which: Holding elections.


The implementation of the elections of the National Council depends first of all on the conviction of the Palestinian factions of the importance of these elections and the importance of their representation of all Palestinians. Without this conviction, the factions will not seek to convince the countries concerned.


In this case, those countries cannot be held responsible for not allowing elections to take place in their territory.


Therefore, it is the national duty of the Palestinian factions to affirm the desire to hold elections in all places of the Palestinian presence. This requires putting this desire into practice through specific and announced mechanisms that are agreed upon.


The first of these mechanisms is the relentless pursuit by all states of consent to allow Palestinians in their territories to participate in the elections for the Palestinian National Council.

This requires the formation of a national committee whose task is to do so. It is not a good idea to delegate this to the CEC because it is outside its powers.

The formation of the National Committee must take into account all the active and influential forces on the ground.

These include Hamas, Fatah, Islamic Jihad, the Popular andDemocratic Fronts, and the need to participate in the presidency of the current National Council on behalf of the PLO.


The mission of this committee: Work to convince the Jordanian and Lebanese authorities and the Arab Gulf states of the importance and necessity of allowing Palestinians in their territories to participate in the elections as candidates and candidates.


The mission of the Committee is as follows: Agreement with these countries on a respectable mechanism for the implementation of the electoral process in a manner that preserves the sovereignty of these countries and affirms their respect for the Palestinian people and their right to vote and representation.


The National Committee must reassure these countries and remove their concerns, In particular, Jordan’s fears that it will lose its representation of the Jordanian Palestinians, He feared dual nationality , which reflected dual loyalty.

The National Committee should reach an agreement between the PLO and the Jordanian government regulating the political rights of dual nationals. This agreement is a prelude to the formation of an electoral register for Palestinians in Jordan.


The argument that Jordan will never be an alternative homeland for the Palestinians must move from the stage of slogans to reality.


The field of application today is to allow the Palestinians of Jordan to participate in the Palestinian National Council elections, confirming that they are Palestinian and that they have not and will not be Jordanians.

Jordan’s allowing Palestinian participation in Jordan confirms that it has not and will not be an alternative homeland to Palestine.


The same is said of Lebanon, which cracked our heads by talking about its fears of settling Palestinians there.


If Lebanon really does not want to settle the Palestinians, He should allow them to assert their Palestinian status through their participation in the PNC elections.


As for the Palestinians across the world and distant Arab countries, It is necessary to establish a significant mechanism through the Palestinian consensus and in consultation with them on how to participate in the elections. and even their right to run for membership in the National Assembly.


The role of Palestinian embassies under the supervision of the National Committee in Palestinian elections in Europe, Latin America, and elsewhere should be defined.


We must take great care that the National Assembly does not duplicate the Legislative Council.

Therefore, the most important characteristic of the PNC is that it will represent all Palestinians wherever they are. The Palestinian National Council should not be limited to Palestinians inside the country because more than half of the Palestinians are outside Palestine.



Talk of an electoral system based on full proportionality was not mentioned in the recent presidential decree,

What applies to elections for the PLC and the presidency of the PA does not necessarily apply to elections for the Palestinian National Council.


The Palestinian forces can agree on special mechanisms to complete the National Council by election, by individual or list system, or both, taking into account the different circumstances abroad.

Any failure by the PLO and Palestinian factions to include Palestinians abroad in the PNC elections would mean:


to weaken the next council and marginalize its role, Everyone should beware of questioning his intentions, Because duty asks everyone.

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