An Egyptian plan to end the dispute between Fatah and Hamas calls for a delay of presidential and legislative elections due in January, Palestinian officials said on Thursday. According to Reuters, officials from the two factions said Egypt proposed elections be held in the first half of 2010 to give it more time to bring a power-sharing deal between Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah and Gaza Strip's Hamas rulers.
The Palestinian presidential and parliamentary elections are set for Jan. 25.
"Egypt believes Abbas will not hold the elections as long as Gaza remains politically separated from the West Bank. Holding the elections will be hard and will mean divisions may last years," an independent legislator, was quoted as saying by Reuters.
The Egyptian proposal also calls to release political detainess held in Gaza Strip and the West Bank. A Fatah official conveyed Abbas would convene a meeting of the Palestine Liberation Organization's executive committee to discuss Egypt's proposal.