Egypt to help Fatah elect its Gaza representatives: official
Published: Aug 07, 2009 11:11 AM Updated: May 25, 2011 12:55 PM

Egypt will intervene to help Gaza-based members of Palestinian Fatah movement nominate and vote for their representatives in the movement's leading bodies, an official said on Thursday.

The decision was taken after Islamic Hamas movement, which controls the Gaza Strip, prevented Fatah delegates from traveling to the West Bank to participate in their movement's first general convention in 20 years that started in Bethlehem city on Tuesday.

"Putting the mechanism of nominating and electing Gaza members for the central committee and the revolutionary council would be done in cooperation with Egypt," said Ibrahim Abu al-Najja, Fatah leader in Gaza, referring to the highest decision-making bodies in Fatah that would be reelected at the end of the conference.

"The seats of Gaza in the two councils will remain vacant and we will start looking for how to complete this operation (elections) in the Gaza Strip," he added.

"We will discuss with our Egyptian brothers and the factions in Gaza to come up with a firm formula to continue the democratic process that started in Bethlehem," Abu al-Najja added.

The elections will take place on Friday and the conferees in Bethlehem have rejected to give a quota for Gaza. However, Nabil Amr, a spokesman for Fatah congress, said they were working on settling Gaza's issue.

Egypt has been sponsoring reconciliation talks between Hamas and Fatah since February, trying to reunite the Gaza Strip and the West Bank under one government. 

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