A Federal Foreign Office Spokesperson issued the following statement today (17 January):
We welcome the decree that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has issued, officially launching preparations for parliamentary and presidential elections in the Palestinian territories as of 22 May.
This is an important step, for democratically legitimised Palestinian institutions are vital on the path to Palestinian self-determination and a negotiated two-state solution. The announcement must now be followed up with action. We therefore urge all Palestinian groups and parties to play a constructive role, so that all Palestinians in the West Bank, the Gaza strip and East Jerusalem can elect their political representatives through free, fair and inclusive elections. For this, close coordination with Israel will be key.
Germany stands ready with its partners in the European Union to support the process as it moves forward.