The Khan Younis Court dismissed several PLO candidates from the lists competing in the municipal elections in the southern Gaza Strip, Ma’an reported Thursday morning. The court’s decision came after several appeals had been filed against PLO lists in and around the cities of Khan Younis Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip.
Journalist Dov Lieber tweeted in the early AM: “Palestinian court postpones local elections set for October,” which he attributed to AFP. Apparently, the court in Ramallah has followed the disqualification of PLO candidates in Gaza by postponing the elections altogether.
The Gaza court decision wipes the PLO out of the competition in nine municipalities out of 25 in Gaza.
Dr. Fayez Abu Eita, a spokesman for the PLO, said the decision to drop his movement’s candidates from local lists was tantamount to a “massacre by the Hamas court.” He said the PLO was running “lists of the finest people, qualified specialists and professionals,” and so when Hamas realized they had no one of equal quality to run against them, they ordered their court to “drop them under false and fabricated pretexts” which were both “illogical and illegal.”
Abu Eita added: “They wanted to compete with themselves after the overthrow of these lists.”
Abu Eita called on the Central Election Commission to assume their responsibilities over what he described as the failure of the election process, stressing that all the appeals were illegitimate, intended solely to thwart any challenges to the Hamas candidates.David Israel