Palestinian factions in Cairo vow to hold free, fair elections

Mohamed Soliman , Tuesday 16 Mar 2021

The factions concluded the first day of the Cairo-based talks by signing a code of honour, asserting their keenness on holding all stages of the much-awaited election process with transparency and integrity

Palestinian Dialogue
Palestinian factions’ delegations attended on Tuesday the second round of national dialogue in Cairo (press photo)

Palestinian factions' delegates, gathering for the Cairo-based Palestinian National Dialogue, signed on Tuesday what they termed as an honour code in which they vowed to conduct the forthcoming presidential and parliamentary elections in a "fair and free" manner.

The factions assured that all stages of the much-awaited election, slated for this summer, would be held in a manner that achieves transparency and integrity.

The Palestinian delegations vowed to adhere to all provisions of laws and decrees that regulate the elections process to strengthen national unity and the public interest, as per the code of honour.

The factions, under the code, will abide by all regulations and instructions issued by the elections supervisory committee to achieve transparency and integrity, particularly preserving the principle of secret balloting and giving the Palestinians the right to cast ballots freely.

They also agreed to avoid using the houses of worship as a tool for the electoral campaigns.

The factions emphasised the need to respect the Palestinian police's role in securing the election process as well as respect the role of local, Arab and international observers.

They called for implementing the election laws by "criminalising" receiving foreign funds to support the electoral campaigns of candidates.

The participants pledged not to resort to any form of incitement or defamation against the candidates, or using religious, sectarian, tribal, or racial slogans against any segment in the society, or attacking the competitors' election campaigns.

The factions vowed not to resort to wielding weapons during public meetings, rallies, and other electoral activities, the honour code added.

The second and final day of the second round of Cairo-based talks is set to resume on Wednesday.

The two-day round, kicked off earlier today, is meant to focus on removing obstacles facing the coming Palestinian general elections, which is set to be the first in the country since 2005 due to the inter-Palestinian differences.

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi addressed the participating delegations, expressing hope that the goals of the national dialogue are achieved.

The first round of the National Palestinian Dialogue was held in the Egyptian capital in February, where the factions reached an agreement on the mechanisms for holding the parliamentary and presidential elections.

The parliamentary elections are slated for 22 May and the presidential elections are due by 31 July.

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