RAMALLAH, Feb 8 (JMCC) - The Palestinian Authority
cabinet in Ramallah
announced Tuesday that local council elections will be held on July 9 in the West Bank
and Gaza Strip
The cabinet decided during its meeting today to hold local elections on Saturday 9 July and charged the electoral commission with making the necessary preparations for it, government spokesman Ghassan Khatib told AFP, reading from an official statement.
Local polls were originally set for July 17, 2010 but postponed after the Islamic Hamas movement, which rules Gaza, said it would not participate.
Hamas on Tuesday reiterated its refusal to participate in polls run by the Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority, which is dominated by the rival Fatah movement, meaning the elections are likely to be limited to the West Bank.
These elections are not valid because they are called for by the Palestinian Authority and the government and are devoid of legitimacy, spokesman Fawzi Barhum told AFP in Gaza City.
We in Hamas will not participate in this farce and will not recognise the result of it.
The last time the Palestinians went to the polls was in 2006 for legislative elections, which Hamas won by a landslide.