Hamas to hold presidential elections in Cairo

Hamas to hold presidential elections in Cairo

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Sun, 31/03/2013 - 16:20

Hamas will conduct presidential elections for its political bureau in Cairo on Monday, with most of its leadership in attendance, Egyptian and Palestinian sources said.

The sources, which spoke on condition of anonymity, told Anadolu news agency that the movement’s prominent leaders, particularly political bureau head Khaled Meshaal and Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh are in Cairo for the elections, having arrived Saturday.

The same sources said that Meshaal’s mandate will likely be renewed, despite his insistence that he will not run in the election, while also adding that he possesses experience and international ties that will be critical for the group in its current stage.

Many other regional parties that have relationships with Hamas, including the Muslim Brotherhood and the ruling governments in Egypt, Turkey and Qatar, reportedly also want Meshaal to stay.

Hamas’ internal elections began in April 2012 but did not end with a new president being elected. Sources from within Hamas said that the election of a new president was delayed due to the complicated nature of the election and Meshaal’s announcement that he would not seek another term.

Hamas elects leaders for Gaza, the West Bank and for the Palestinian diaspora every four years.