Palestinian National Authority

Ending the Occupation, Establishing the State

Program of the Thirteenth Government

August 2009

Table of Contents



Our Vision of the State of Palestine

Foundational Principles

National Goals

Institutional Development

Sector Priorities, Policies and Programs:

Foundational Principles

The foundations of the Palestinian state, and the rights, freedoms and duties of its citizens are clearly articulated in the Declaration of Independence of 1988, and the Basic Law of 2003. We are building a democratic system of government founded on political pluralism, guarantee of equality, and protection of all its citizens’ rights and freedoms as safeguarded by the law and within its limits. These include the right to form political parties and engage in political activity without discrimination on any grounds whatsoever.

Political parties shall abide by the principles of national sovereignty, democracy and peaceful, regular transfer of authority. The Basic Law safeguards rights of minorities. In accordance with the law, the minorities must abide by the will of the majority.

Government is to be based on the principles of justice and rule of law, equality and tolerance, safeguarded by clear separation of powers of the executive, the legislature and judiciary. All government authorities, agencies, departments and individuals shall abide by the law and work in the service of citizens without discrimination on any grounds whatsoever. The independence and immunity of the judiciary are constitutionally guaranteed and the law shall punish any infringement on its dignity. Crime and punishment are to be determined under the law, under which all Palestinians are equal; collective punishment is absolutely prohibited.

All Palestinians are equal before the law. They enjoy civil and political rights and bear public duties without discrimination, regardless of race, gender, colour, religion, political opinion, or disability. Human rights and fundamental freedoms are binding and must be respected. The state shall guarantee religious, civil, political, economic, social, and cultural rights and freedoms to all citizens and their enjoyment on the principle of equality and equal opportunity. A person may not be deprived of his rights, fundamental, or legal competence for political reasons.

The state is solely responsible for the safety and security of persons and property. Its security apparatus, which is built on professional grounds within limits of the law, shall work to protect the rights of every citizen so that he feels secure both at home and abroad. It is not permitted for individuals and groups to acquire, bear, or possess arms in a manner that is in violation of the provisions of the law. Without prejudice to the principle that the state solely has the jurisdiction in the security field, defending the nation is sacred duty and serving it is an honour for every citizen.

Shelter, education and health insurance are basic rights which will be preserved and protected by the state. The state also has an enduring obligation to care and provide for the martyrs, prisoners, orphans and all those harmed in the Palestinian struggle for independence.

Natural resources, archaeological remains, and historical and heritage sites in the State of Palestine are the property of the Palestinian people. The state shall preserve them and regulate their use in accordance with the law. Preservation of the Palestinian environment shall be the duty of the state and the society. Damage to the environment shall be prosecuted under the law.

The economic system in Palestine shall be based on the principles of a free market economy within the context of legitimate and responsible competition. The state shall strive to promote social, economic and cultural growth and scientific development of the Palestinian people while confirming its commitment to ensure social justice and providing protection to those with special needs and vulnerable groups.

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