Palestinian Factions Agree to Reduce the Number of National Council Members

Ramallah, MINA – Palestinian factions have agreed to reduce the number of the Palestinian National Council (PNC) members from 765 to only 350, with 35-150 from inside Palestine and 200 from the diaspora abroad.

Speaking to official Palestinian radio, Secretary of the PNC Mohammed Subaih insisted the cut was decided after lengthy discussions among various Palestinian factions, Anadolu Agency reported.

The PNC is a Palestinian body that represents Palestinians inside and outside Palestine, while the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) is a body that represents Palestinians in the occupied territories.

According to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, the number of Palestinians will reach around 13.7 million by the end of 2020, consisting of 5.2 million in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and Jerusalem, 6.2 million in Arab countries, about 738,000 in countries- other countries and 1.6 million in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1948 or Israel.

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Subaih explained 132 PLC members automatically became PNC members and the remaining 18 members were elected through a national agreement between Palestinian factions.

The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) constitution stipulates that the PNC is the highest authority of the organization and body that establishes its plans and programs.

Subaih indicated that only the members of the PLC were elected by the Palestinian people. Others are chosen by agreement among factions because many of the countries hosting Palestinians have their own policies.

The PNC has not held an election since it was formed in 1964. In 1996, the PNC was based in Gaza and elected its chairman, Salim Zanoun.

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On Friday, the Palestinian Authority, PLO and Fatah President Mahmoud Abbas issued a decision to hold consecutive presidential, PLC and PNC elections in the next six months. (T/R7/RE1)

Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)