Skip to main content

Abbas faces tough decision on Palestinian elections

The pressure is intensifying for President Mahmoud Abbas to postpone the elections, which are becoming a dangerous game for the Israelis and other concerned parties.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas speaks at the United Nations Security Council, New York, Feb. 11, 2020.

Time is quickly running out on the possibility of avoiding the unpredictable results of the upcoming Palestinian elections. Pressure is mounting on Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to cancel or postpone a set of elections — legislative on May 22, presidential on July 31 and Palestinian National Council on Aug. 31 — that he had decreed on Jan. 13.

The Israelis are not interested in elections that will remind their own people and the world that there are Palestinians on the other side of the nearly erased Green Line. The United States under President Joe Biden has avoided making any decision on the Middle East giving climate change, Iran, Afghanistan, Russia and Yemen the priority on their foreign agenda. Jordan and Egypt are also worried about the upcoming elections although for different reasons. All those countries plus hordes of those Palestinians close to Abbas who are afraid of losing power or even sharing power are trying their hardest behind closed doors to get out of the risky business of elections, whose results are still hard to predict.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.