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Hamas to get authorizations from jailed lawmakers
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10:09, October 03, 2007

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Hamas looks to receive authorizations from its jailed lawmakers in a bid to revive the Palestinian Legislative council (PLC), which had not convened since June, a spokesman for Hamas' parliamentary bloc said Tuesday.

"The forcible absence of the legislators will not affect the work of the council when the deputation is acquired," said Salah al-Bardaweel.

Al-Bardaweel explained that Israel has imprisoned 40 Hamas lawmakers out of 76. "If we got the authorization, the quorum can be complete," he said.

Hamas defeated Fatah overwhelmingly in an early 2006 legislative elections and seized 76 seats in the PLC, which is comprised of 132 members.

Israel's detention of Hamas lawmakers and the power struggle between Hamas and Fatah have disabled the PLC and blocked any legislation since Hamas won the elections.

The PLC did not hold any session since mid-June when Hamas took over the Gaza Strip, which prompted Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to sack the Hamas-led government and appointed a new one in the West Bank city of Ramallah.

In early September, Abbas issued a Presidential decree and made several amendments to the Palestinian electoral law, which was rejected by Hamas as "illegal."

Hamas said Abbas' move was aimed at "depriving Hamas movement from joining any future legislative elections."

But Abbas insisted that he has the right to amend the electoral law.

"It is my right as a president to legislate laws and decisions that are called decrees. These decrees are legal, as long as the Palestinian Legislative Council is not able to convene," Abbas said on Sept. 2.

"If the PLC is able to convene, then it would be its right to pass my decree or reject it," said Abbas.

Source: Xinhua

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