The chamber of the Palestinian Legislative Council, which has not met in years. Palestinian Authority elections are long overdue. Photo credit: Wikimedia/Jasmine Halki (CC BY 2.0)
Freedom House Rating
2.8 million (West Bank) and 1.8 million (Gaza Strip)
May 22, 2021
July 31, 2021
May 13, 2017 (West Bank only)
January 25, 2006
January 9, 2005
December 2004-December 2005 (both West Bank and Gaza Strip)
The Palestinian Authority – consisting of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank – had scheduled long-overdue legislative elections for May 22, 2021 and a long-delayed presidential election for July 31, 2021. However, the elections have been postponed, with no date set.
Palestinian Authority elections are long overdue. President Mahmoud Abbas is currently in year 16 of a four-year term. Likewise, Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) elections are also long overdue – the last took place in 2006, and the legislators’ terms expired in 2010. Meanwhile, the PLC has not met since 2007. In other words, the PLC is not currently functioning.
After several rounds of talks, Abbas scheduled legislative elections for May 22, 2021 and a presidential election for July 31, 2021.However, in late April, Abbas announced that the elections would be delayed.
Curated News and Analysis
Khaled Abu Toameh, Jerusalem Post (May 11, 2021): What is Hamas trying to achieve by fighting Israel? – analysis
Daoud Kuttab, Forward (May 7, 2021): The U.S. must fight for fair Palestinian elections — and Israel should, too
Adnan Abu Amer, Al-Monitor (May 7, 2021): Palestinian factions mull next steps after Abbas calls off elections
Hugh Lovatt, European Council on Foreign Relations (May 5, 2021): Cancellation costs: Abbas and Palestinian democracy
International Crisis Group (April 30, 2021): Why Palestinian Elections Should Get Back on Track
Nidal Al-mughrabi, Ali Sawafta, and Rami Ayyub, Reuters (April 30, 2021): Palestinian leader delays parliamentary and presidential elections, blaming Israel
Henriette Chacar, +972 Magazine (April 22, 2021): Young Palestinians are fed up with their leaders. Can elections bring change?
i24 News (April 17, 2021): Push for postponing Palestinian elections gains momentum on back of Hamas concerns: report
Elliott Abrams, Council on Foreign Relations (April 20, 2021): Thinking About the Palestinian Elections
Barak Ravid, Axios (April 7, 2021): U.S. and Israel wary of potential Hamas win in Palestinian elections
Omar H. Rahman, +972 Magazine (March 16, 2021): Why elections are key to re-energizing Palestinian politics
Motasem Ahmed Dalloul, TRT World (March 16, 2021): What does Hamas want from elections? Global legitimacy.
Ynet News (March 16, 2021): Hamas presents new leadership including a woman for the first time
James Rothwell, The Telegraph (March 9, 2021): Yasser Arafat’s nephew issues challenge to Mahmoud Abbas ahead of first Palestinian elections since 2006
Khaled Abu Toameh, Jerusalem Post (March 1, 2021): Palestinian Election: Coronavirus, Fatah strife may delay, cancel vote
Ahmad Melhem, Al-Monitor (February 28, 2021): Despite international support, obstacles threaten Palestinian elections
Adnan Abu Amer, Al-Monitor (February 27, 2021): Hamas holds internal elections ahead of Palestinian general elections
La Croix International (February 25, 2021): Christians assured of seven seats in new Palestinian Legislative Council
Omar H. Rahman, Brookings Institution (February 24, 2021): Elections in Palestine: Prelude or ploy?
Reuters (February 17, 2021): Palestinians report 93% voter registration for upcoming elections
Murat Sofuoglu, TRT World (February 13, 2021): Will elections bring change to Palestine?
AP (February 10, 2021): Palestinian elections on track after factions meet in Cairo
Fares Akram, AP (February 10, 2021): Gazans hope for vote after years of Hamas rule, isolation
Reuters (February 10, 2021): Palestinians open election registration offices in West Bank and Gaza
Nidal al-Mughrabi and Ali Sawafta, Reuters (February 8, 2021): Hamas and Fatah hold Egyptian-brokered reconciliation talks in Cairo
Isabel Kershner and Adam Rasgon, New York Times (January 15, 2021): Abbas Announces Palestinian Elections After Years of Paralysis
Aaron Boxerman, Times of Israel (October 7, 2020): Despite flurry of fresh promises, Palestinians skeptical elections will happen
Al Jazeera (September 23, 2020): Fatah, Hamas say deal reached on Palestinian elections
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Updated May 11, 2021