UN Urges “Israel” to Allow East Al-Quds Voting in Palestinian Elections
By Staff, Agencies
The United Nations and European members of the Security Council called Thursday for the “Israeli” entity to permit all eligible Palestinians in East al-Quds [Jerusalem] to be able to vote in the first Palestinian legislative elections in 15 years.
Palestinians in the occupied West Bank, besieged Gaza Strip, and East al-Quds are due to vote on May 22 ahead of a planned presidential election in July that various opinion polls have Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas losing.
The Palestinian election commission says 150,000 voters will be able to cast ballots on the outskirts of East al-Quds, in a process that does not require a green light from the entity. And a symbolic 6,300 will get to vote within the holy city itself under “Israeli” supervision.
But Palestinian authorities fear that arrangement could still leave thousands of the city’s inhabitants disenfranchised.
“It is very important that Palestinians in all parts of the occupied Palestinian territory are able to participate in this very important democratic process,” UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said.
Dujarric was echoing a statement issued by Security Council members Estonia, France, and Ireland, and former members Germany and Belgium, after the council’s latest monthly session on the “Israeli”-Palestinian conflict.
“We stand ready to support free, fair, and inclusive elections across the occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and welcome the constructive engagement by the Palestinian factions,” they said.
A senior adviser to Abbas said Tuesday that the national elections are “very likely” to be postponed if Israel does not allow voting in East al-Quds.
About 60 candidates in the Palestinian elections are from East al-Quds.
The “Israeli” entity has yet to say whether it will permit voting in East al-Quds.