Saturday afternoon, Palestinian legislators passed a new election law setting a later date for the legislative election originally slated for July 17, 2005.

The law was proposed by the Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, abu Mazin, suggesting a later date for the elections originally slated to be carried out on July, 17, 2005.

66 parliament seats out of 132 will be elected in regional polls, 66 other seats will be for party representatives in general polls conducted in the Palestinian areas.

The new law was approved by 43 members against 13.

The Palestinian radio reported that Rawhi Fattouh, PLC spokesperson, said that the elections will be conducted early next year, and that the exact date will be determined by Abbas.

“It is up to the president to decide it, I believe the elections will be held on January 2006, taking in consideration that the first legislative elections were conducted in January 1996”, Fattouh said.

According to a report published by the Israeli radio, 44 parliament members signed earlier on Saturday a petition calling on the Palestinian Prime Minister Ahmed Qureia to face a hearing.

The radio reported that the legislators described the policymaking of Qureia as “unsatisfactory”.

The legislators said that if the replies of Qureia turn to be unsatisfactory, they will pass a no-confidence motion against him.