March 8, 2012 - 1:00am

RAMALLAH, March 7 (Xinhua) -- Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) on Wednesday called on the Central Elections Commission (CEC) to start preparing for holding the general elections in the Palestinian territories.

The CEC should begin the process of registration of voters in Gaza and the West Bank, the PLO executive committee said in a statement issued after a meeting held in Ramallah and chaired by President Mahmoud Abbas.

Yasser Abed Rabbo, Secretary General of the PLO's executive committee, who read the statement to the press, said that the elections commission will start its work in Gaza, West Bank and East Jerusalem.

"The PLO calls for not to obstruct the central elections commission under any circumstances, preconditions or new demands," said Abed Rabbo, referring to Islamic Hamas movement, which controls the Gaza Strip and rules it.

The PLO expressed commitments to the reconciliation agreement signed in both the Egyptian capital of Cairo in May of last year and in Qatar this year which aimed at ending more than four years of internal Palestinian division.

The statement called for the accurate implementation of the signed agreements, mainly the preparations for holding presidential and legislative elections in the Palestinian territories.

Hamas and Abbas' Fatah Party also agreed that Abbas will form a transitional government that includes independent technocrats and aims at preparing for holding the elections and reconstructing the Gaza Strip.

Following the signing of the Doha declaration of ending division, Hamas authorities in Gaza agreed to reopen the offices of the elections commissions, but still prevents it from registering the new voters.

"The transitional government must be independent and transitional. It would prepare for holding the elections and the election commission has to start registering the new voters who have the right to vote," Abed Rabbo said.


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