See the picture posted by the mother from Gaza on “Raising Yosuf” ,here and the pre elections jitters here.
Television channels are reporting a 60% voter turnout so far in the Palestinian elections. Out of the 1.3 million eligible to vote that’s a great rate. Only a third so far turned out to vote in East Jerusalem. First polls show a narrow victory to the Fatah over the Hamas. This was true earlier today.
The news through the day mentioned the record turnout. People enjoyed these first elections and the democratic process. With the charged atmosphere that surrounds the Palestinian and Israeli question one tends to forget that this is a major step, regardless of the results. With over a million votes in, the Fatah seems to have 42% of the votes and the Hamas approximately 39%. These are approximate numbers and still not final.
Ehud Olmert in a speech yesterday went over the conditions of the road map for relations with the Palestinians and the importance of these elections. No doubt the Israeli side would prefer if the Hamas was not the ruling party after these elections. On the other hand, the Fatah has its own problems and internal disputes.
As soon as the Hamas sensed the loss in recent hours, the word on the street is that the organization is now willing to discuss a cease fire with Israel. They call it a Hudna Agreement.
Hamas could be part of the a new coalition and end up a part of the new government. The percentages are close and the final results will be tallied tonight.
In any case, congratulations on what seems to have been a smooth election process.
Another first in the Middle East.
January 26, 2006 at 3:20 am
if Hamas wins the elections the peace process, which for all practical purposes is non existent anyway, will be entirely paralysed unless Hamas accepts the conditions of both the EU and the United States and do two things: a. disarms. b.Changes its covenant and recognizes Israel’s right to exist.
January 26, 2006 at 5:49 am
Congretulations to Abbas for managing to run
the elections in a reasoable democratic manner, that said,as Hamas is now a part of the palestinian parliament and possibly of their government,freezing any future talks
with Israel for a long time to come is now