The Palestinian Electoral Board has approved a list of candidates for the May vote Palestine News

The Palestinian Election Commission announced the approval of the list of 36 candidates for the May 22 assembly vote.

Palestinian election officials have announced that a list of three candidates has been approved for next month’s parliamentary elections, the first Palestinian election in 15 years.

The vote ahead of the July 31 presidential election is part of an effort by the influential Palestinian movement – Fatah and Hamas – to increase international support for the Palestinian Authority.

As of Wednesday, the groups had to submit a list of candidates to contest the May 22 assembly vote.

The Palestinian Election Commission announced on its website on Sunday that it had approved 336 applications, although the names of each list were due to be published on Tuesday.

The Fatah movement of President Mahmoud Abbas, who dominates the Palestinian Authority in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, is contesting elections, such as Hamas, which has been running the Israeli-besieged Gaza Strip since 200 years.

Fatah faced various opposition parties, including the independence list led by Nasser al-Kidwa, the nephew of the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat.

Popular leader Marwan Barghouti, who was sentenced to multiple life sentences in Israel for organizing deadly attacks during the second Palestinian intifada (coup) from 2000-2005, has backed independence.

Abbas’s former Ghazi security chief, Muhammad Dahlan, who is currently in exile in Abu Dhabi, is also backing the list of challengers.

Former Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, a former World Bank official with a track record of fighting corruption, is backing another.

Fatah and Hamas have reached an agreement to vote in the West Bank and Gaza, but the Palestinians’ ability to vote in occupied East Jerusalem remains uncertain.

Israel has banned all Palestinian political activity in Jerusalem, but Palestinian leaders have insisted that voting will take place east of the city, which they claim is the capital of a future Palestinian state.

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