European Union Asks Israel to Facilitate Elections in East Jerusalem

Brussels, MINA – The European Union on Friday urged Israel to continue the elections throughout the Palestinian territories and expressed disappointment over the pending elections because Israel did not allow elections in occupied East Jerusalem.

“The decision to postpone Palestinian elections, including legislative elections originally scheduled for May 22, is very disappointing,” EU Foreign Policy Chief Josep Borrell said in a written statement, Anadolu Agency reported.

He asked Israel to facilitate the holding of general elections throughout the Palestinian territories, including in Al-Quds (East Jerusalem).

Borrell also asked the Palestinian authorities to set a new vote date “without delay” and urged all Palestinian political actors to continue the talks.

“We firmly believe there is a need for strong, inclusive, responsible and functioning Palestinian institutions based on the rule of law and human rights for the Palestinian people,” he added.

Borrell also reiterated the European Union’s commitment to a two-state solution.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said on Thursday, he would not hold an election if Jerusalem was excluded from voting.

Abbas said the Israeli side had not yet responded to a Palestinian request to hold a vote in occupied East Jerusalem.

Abbas stressed that once Israel allows elections in Jerusalem, the vote will be held within a week. Palestinian territories including the West Bank and East Jerusalem have been under Israeli occupation since 1967.

Most of the international community, Turkey and the EU do not recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the territory. (T/RE1)

Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)