Fatah wins student council elections at Birzeit, Hebron universities
The Student Council elections held Wednesday at the West Bank University of Birzeit indicated a drop in Fatah power: The movement won 24 seats, as opposed to 22 seats won by Hamas.
Though winning the elections, Fatah still lost one seat to Hamas since the previous elections. Palestinian sources said the results were indicative of Hamas’ success in the West Bank, despite the recent arrests of its senior members.
Results were as follows:
The Shabibeh Students Bloc (Fatah) 24
Islamic Wafa’ Students Bloc (Hamas) 22
Leftist Bloc (PFLP) 4
Palestinian People’s Party 1
Islamic Jihad – withdrew
Several other parties competed in the elections but failed to gain seats.
At Hebron Polytechnic University the Fatah-affiliated Shabibeh Students Bloc won the student council elections after winning 26 out of 31 seats.
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“I’ll be voting for Fatah because my family supports them, and they also have a good political programme for students,” said Ranim Omari, a second-year Psychology student. “Ultimately, both Fatah and Hamas are Palestinian movements and we should be supporting more unity.”
Two first-year female students aged 18 – one of them wearing the Kufiya, a symbol of Palestinian resistance that is increasingly becoming synonymous with Fatah and the PLO – expressed their confusion, although they said they will be voting Hamas.
“I don’t understand anything. I’m only wearing this because it’s fashionable, I like it, but I think I’ll vote for Hamas because they are leading the resistance,” she said.