Palestinian factions met in Cairo over the past few days to reach a consensus on elections.
Egypt will host another meeting of the National Palestinian Dialogue in March to discuss the upcoming steps to be taken for the elections of the National Council in Palestine, the Palestinian factions and groups participating in the National Palestinian Dialogue in Egypt announced on Tuesday.
According to a statement released following two days of talks in Cairo, the Palestinian factions and groups agreed to hold national elections based on a Palestinian presidential decree issued on 15 January 2021 to elect a new legislative assembly (Parliament) followed by presidential elections to complete the formation of the National Council.
The parliamentary elections are set to be held on 22 May and the presidential elections have been set for 31 July.
The statement said that the upcoming Cairo-based meeting will focus on finding a consensus on the criteria and procedures needed to complete the formation of the New National Council, as well as to empower and improve the Palestinian Liberation Authority.
The statement continued that the parties involved are committed to the agreed upon timetable for the parliamentary and presidential elections and that they will be held in Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza without any exclusion and with a commitment to respect the results of those elections.
An "Elections cases court” will be formed to supervise the elections and rule in all its matters and cases. The Palestinian police force will also exclusively secure the polling stations in Gaza and the West Bank. The statement also added that it will find a way to secure the elections process in Jerusalem.
The statement announced the immediate release of all political prisoners who were detained due to tensions between the factions or for speaking out against the governments in the West Bank and Gaza.
The statement also announced that political parties will have the freedom to campaign for the coming elections without being impeded by the security authorities of the West Bank and Gaza, who have been instructed to remain impartial.
The factions have also agreed to delegate the issue of Palestinian detainees at Israeli occupation prisons to the upcoming parliament.
In their statement, the parties and figures involved in the meeting thanked Egypt and Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi for their efforts in supporting and sponsoring the Palestinian National Dialogue.
The statement called on Egypt to follow up on the agreement between the factions to carry out the elections in all its stages.
On Tuesday, per the directives of President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, the Rafah border crossing between Egypt and Gaza was opened to improve the humanitarian situation in Gaza.