Ma'an News Agency
September 11, 2009 - 12:00am

Senior Fatah member and head of the party's parliamentary bloc Azzam Al-Ahmad echoed other members sentiments in his reservations over the Egyptian conciliation plan's treatment of the elections issue, he said in an interview Friday.

Fatah is “keen on having a deadline for the elections according to Palestinian law [on 25 January 2010]” rather than the provisions proposed by the Egyptians which calls for elections during "the first half of 2010," Al-Ahmad said, noting he was "astonished" over the proposal. His reservations mirror those of Fatah Revolutionary Council member Zaid Abu Ein who spoke against the proposal's terms Thursday night.

Fatah leader and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has yet to comment on the proposal, but Al-Ahmad insisted Fatah is preparing to hold elections on the 25 January citing Palestinian law which calls for elections "during the first 90 days” of the new year.

The Egyptian plan, distributed to Palestinian factions on Wednesday, outlines a plan that would set up a council to oversee reconstruction of Gaza and elections in 2010.

According to the proposal, elections for the presidency, Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) and National Council (PNC) will be held in "the first half of 2010." The PNC elections will take place on the basis of full proportional representation.

In terms of the PLC elections, the Egyptian plan has them taking place on a mixed system, with an altered ratio of 25% districts and 75% proportional representation. Hamas negotiators requested a 50/50 district/proportional representation split. As in the 2006 elections, Palestine will be divided into 16 constituencies, 11 in the West Bank and five in the Gaza Strip.

So far, Hamas has indicated it would consider the Egyptian plan, before Hamas and Fatah negotiations resume working toward a unified front in October.


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