Abbas to call for early elections

Sunday, December 10, 2006 |  by Staff Writer
Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas announced on Saturday that he would call for early elections after attempts for a national unity government with Hamas failed.

Palestinian sources said elections could be as early as March. The Palestinian Authority committee recommended that Abbas dismiss the Hamas-led cabinet and call early elections for the Palestinian Legislative Council and for the PA presidency.

During the meeting, hundreds of PA security officers and Fatah gunmen clashed in the Gaza Strip. Protesters demanded unpaid salaries and called for the government to be replaced. Two were wounded in an exchange of gunfire in Gaza City and several Palestinian journalists were beaten in the demonstrations.

Riots spread to Khan Younis and Rafah, where hundreds of officers blocked main roads with burning tires and shot into the air.

Hamas legislator, Yehya Musa, said the latest protests were part of a well-planned scheme designed to bring down the government.

“Ever since Hamas won the election, we have faced repeated attempts to overthrow the democratically elected government,” Musa said. “Those who have be

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