Ramallah: The Western-backed Palestinian
government in the West Bank says it will hold local council
elections "as soon as possible."
The move appears to be a response to unrest in Egypt,
where demonstrators have staged days of rallies against the
authoritarian government. The Palestinian Authority has not
held elections since 2006.
Prime Minister Salam Fayyad`s Cabinet said Tuesday it
will set dates for the vote next week.
Fayyad hopes to hold elections in both the West Bank
and the Gaza Strip. But in reality, Gaza will likely not
participate since it is controlled by the rival Hamas militant
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas canceled local
elections in the West Bank in 2009 when it appeared that his
Fatah movement would lose to independents.