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Dissolved Palestinian Legislative Council removes PA president Abbas from power

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas gives a short statement before leaving a hospital near Ramallah in the occupied West Bank on May 28, 2018 following eight days of treatment for pneumonia
ABBAS MOMANI (AFP)

In the latest development in the rift between Palestinian factions, the Palestinian Legislative Council in Gaza voted to remove Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas from power on Wednesday.

In a text submitted by prominent Hamas political committee member and spokesperson Salah al-Bardawil, the assembly called the president an "enemy of the state" for committing "a number of constitutional, legal, security and humanitarian violations, which seriously and seriously affected the Palestinian national project."

The resolution then asked the politician to immediately step down, or face constitutional proceedings aimed at his destitution. It also appealed to national, regional and international institutions to "stop dealing" with the president or any of his delegations.

The PLC, which has largely had a symbolic function since the last elections in 2007 due mainly to the impossibility of assembling in one location. It was dissolved by Abbas at the end of 2018.

(AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)

The Fatah leader dissolved the institution, in which Hamas has a majority, in order to put pressure on the Gaza-based movement as reconciliation talks between the two factions degenerate into an open conflict.

Last week, Hamas called dozens of Fatah members in the coastal enclave for questioning, and de facto prevented a rally that was meant to commemorate the movement's 54th anniversary.

In response, the Palestinian Authority pulled its troops out of the Rafah crossing with Egypt on Sunday. Egyptian forces have since re-opened the checkpoint, but to entry of people and goods into the Gaza Strip only.

The Palestinian Legislative Council, which is the Authority's law-making body, has been de facto inactive for the last 11 years, since the 2007 split between Hamas and Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah.

The parliament, in which Hamas and Hamas-affiliated members currently have a majority of 74 out of 132, has not been able to sit for the last 11 years.

The PLC, which represents Palestinian residents of the West Bank and Gaza, has a largely symbolic role, like the Palestinian National Council, which represents Palestinians throughout the world.

Palestinian democratic institutions have been made redundant by internal conflicts between Palestinian factions, and the practical difficulties linked to freedom of movement with Palestinian territory.

Photo: AP

About 40% of parliamentarians have been arrested at least once by Israeli security forces since being elected in 2006, Palestinian statistics show.

The ruling to dissolve the council was made by the Palestinian Constitutional Court in Ramallah, and was qualified by Hamas "unconstitutional and irresponsible," as termed by spokesperson Fawzi Barhoum.

-- The people call for dissolution --

The PA president was also facing calls for the dissolution of government, as a reported 10,000 people travelled to Ramallah from throughout the West Bank despite rainy weather to conduct a sit-in protest at the Manara roundabout in the Palestinian urban center.

Palestinian news agency Maan reported that the protesters demanded the departure of the current government and recognition of the Palestinian General Trade Union as a legitimate institution.

MOHAMMED ABED (AFP/File)

In 2016, after years of international bodies assisting Abbas' government to write a social security law realistic for Palestinian society's needs, a new law was enacted mandating the creation of the Palestinian Social Security Institution.

The protests in Ramallah against the new measure have occurred repeatedly for several weeks, as the government faces mounting public opposition to the impending taxes required for Palestinians being registered as members of the private sector.

Amir Hamdan, the media spokesperson for the movement against the new law, said during the protest that they are calling for the cancellation of the social security law as well as the improvement of Palestinian labor laws and how they apply to protect workers, according to Ma'an.

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the palestinians have parlament without a country ? ? ? ? ?

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