web analytics
October 21, 2014 / 27 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Abbas’s Plan to Steal Local Elections

The question now is not whether Fatah would win the vote, but how large the victory will be.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmud Abbas

Palestinian Authority President Mahmud Abbas
Photo Credit: Issam Rimawi/Flash90

After repeated delays, Palestinians in the West Bank [Judea and Samaria] are scheduled to hold local elections on October 20 for 245 village councils and 98 municipalities.

In recent weeks, the Fatah leadership has been working hard to ensure that its candidates win the local elections.

Since the first free and democratic Palestinian local elections were held in 1976 under the Israeli military government, the Palestinians have had only one local election — in 2005.

The 2005 elections saw Hamas candidates score major victories in most West Bank cities, including Nablus, Kalkilya, Bethlehem and Tulkarem.

This year’s elections, however, are being boycotted by Hamas, leaving its rival Fatah faction as the main contender.

Hamas’s decision to boycott the upcoming vote was, ironically, one of the main reasons why the Palestinian Authority leadership decided to go ahead with the elections.

When Hamas announced its decision to boycott the local elections, there was a sigh of relief in Ramallah.

The Palestinian leadership in the West Bank wants to avoid a repeat of the 2005 election, which saw Hamas candidates take over many village councils and municipalities.

Fatah is instead being challenged by independent candidates and representatives of some PLO groups, such as the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP) and the People’s (Communist) Party.

The question now is not whether Fatah would win the vote, but how large the victory will be.

To ensure a landslide victory, the Fatah leadership, headed by Abbas, has taken a number of measures aimed at weakening its rivals.

First, Fatah has dismissed about 50 of its members who decided to run as on an independent ticket in the elections.

Among those who were dismissed is Ghassan Shaka’a, a prominent Fatah figure from Nablus who has decided to contest the vote outside his faction’s framework. Shaka’a, a former Nablus mayor, has angered Abbas and the Fatah leadership by running as an independent candidate.

Second, Fatah has decided to suspend funds to the other PLO groups that are running against Fatah in the local elections.

Until last month, these groups, especially the PFLP and DFLP, used to receive regular funding from the PLO leadership, although most of them are opposed to the Oslo Accords and peace talks with Israel.

Abbas is hoping that the dismissal of unruly Fatah candidates and the suspension of funds to his political rivals will guarantee his loyalists a smooth victory.

Abbas’s efforts to take over the village councils and municipalities began long before the date was set for the local elections.

Over the past few years, Abbas’s government and security forces have dismissed and arrested several elected mayors and members of municipal councils who were affiliated with Hamas or other rival groups.

This is, in fact, one of the main reasons why Hamas says it decided to boycott this year’s elections. According to Hamas officials, there can be no free and fair elections in the West Bank while Abbas is cracking down on anyone who dares to challenge him.

Fatah’s decision to hold local elections only in the West Bank is an admission that the Palestinians have two separate entities: the West Bank and Gaza. Abbas’s critics say that by insisting on going ahead with the vote, he has “solidified” the split between the Fatah-controlled West Bank and the Hamas-run Gaza Strip.

This is something that the U.N. General Assembly will have to take into consideration when it is scheduled next month to vote on Abbas’s application to upgrade the status of a Palestinian state to “non-member.” The UN members should ask Abbas which state he is talking about — the one in the West Bank or the one in the Gaza Strip?

Originally published by the Gatestone Institute.

About the Author: Khaled Abu Toameh, an Arab Muslim, is a veteran award-winning journalist who has been covering Palestinian affairs for nearly three decades.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Abbas’s Plan to Steal Local Elections”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Facebook post from man believed to be Canadian convert to Islam who rammed soldiers with his car in possible terrorist attack, Oct. 20, 2014.
‘Radicalized’ Convert to Islam Attempted to Murder Canadian Soldiers [video]
Latest Indepth Stories
256px-Israel-Palestine_flags.svg

Polls indicate that the Palestinians are much more against a two state solution than the Israelis.

Map of Syria-Turkish border area, pinpointing Kurdish border town of Kobani, just taken by ISIS terror forces Oct 7, 2014.

Turkey and Iran the 2 regional powers surrounding the ISIS conflict gain from a partial ISIS victory

The Rosenstrasse area of Berlin, where Jewish husbands of non-Jewish German wives were held.

Emigration from Israel is at an all-time low, far lower than immigration to Israel from Europe.

NY rally against Met Opera's 'Death of Klinghoffer' opera. Sept. 22, 2014.

Leon Klinghoffer’s daughters: “‘Klinghoffer’ is justified as ‘a work of art’…This is an outrage.”

Do you seriously think that as you kidnap our children we should medically treat and help yours?

Sometimes collective action against the heinous acts of the majority is not enough. The world should not only support the blockade of Gaza; it must enforce the dismantling of Hamas.

The Arab Spring has challenged Jordan with the task of gradual reform with regard to its monarchy.

Israel offered Syria the entire Golan Heights, only to find that the Syrians were demanding MORE!

Israeli hasbara too can be described at best as pathetic, at worst non existent.

A ‘good news’ story from the Nepal avalanche disaster to warm your heart. Take out your Kleenex.

Journalists see the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as morality play: Israel=evil; Palestine=innocent

Warsaw Ghetto: At its height, the Nazis walled in some 500,000 Jews within the1.3 square mile area.

While police officers face dangers every day on the job, Jews also face danger in their daily lives.

Carter developed a fondness for Arafat believing “they were both ordained to be peacemakers by God”

If Hamas is ISIS, the world asks, why didn’t Israel destroy it given justification and opportunity?

That key is the disarming of Hamas and the demilitarization of Gaza – as the U.S., EU, and others agreed to in principle at the end of Operation Protective Edge.

More Articles from Khaled Abu Toameh
Relatives of missing Palestinian migrants who were on boats that sank near Malta demonstrate in Gaza, Sept. 22, 2014

To flee Gaza, Palestinian migrants reputedly paid $1000s to Hamas officials and Egyptian smugglers.

Senior Hamas and Fatah leaders in Gaza City on April 22. Hamas and Fatah signed a deal to establish a unity government at that time but it has taken until October to set the government's first Cabinet meeting in Gaza.

Fatah: Hamas stole relief aid for Gaza and distributed it amongst its followers in mosques.

Arab leaders who want the US to stop Islamic State are afraid of being dubbed traitors and US agents

Hamas and Islamic Jihad are actually fighting to “liberate Jerusalem and all Palestine.”

Hamas seems to have reached the conclusion that the reconciliation pact with Abbas will not do it any good.

The dispute over money between Hamas and Fatah shows that each group signed the reconciliation agreement for its own interests.

While they continue to hate Israel and seek its destruction, many Arabs admire the independence of Israel’s judicial system.

The Palestinian Authority has jailed more than 350 Arabs for “security” reasons in just 2014.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/abbass-plan-to-steal-local-elections/2012/10/11/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: