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Not to be confused with the Palestinian Legislative Council, the legislative body of the Palestinian National Authority until 2006..

The Palestinian National Council (PNC) is the legislative body of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and elects its Executive Committee (PLO EC), which assumes leadership of the organization between its sessions. The PNC is the highest authority in the PLO, responsible for formulating its policies and programs. It serves as the parliament for all Palestinians in and outside of the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT), it represents all sectors of the Palestinian community worldwide, including political parties, popular organizations, resistance movements, and independent figures from all sectors of life.[1]

The Council formally meets every two years. Resolutions are passed by a simple majority with a quorum of two-thirds. The PNC elects its own chairman.[2]


Candidates for the PNC must be nominated by a committee consisting of the PLO Executive Committee, the PNC chairman, and the commander in chief of the Palestine Liberation Army.[2] After nomination PNC candidates must be elected by a majority of the entire PNC membership.[2] PNC elections have never been held. Due to the impossibility of holding elections, most members are appointed by the Executive Committee.[1]

In 1996, the total number of PNC members was increased with 400 to about 800, when the Council had to vote on the revision of the Palestinian National Charter. By 2009, some 700 from them had remained.[3] As of 2003, the PNC was chaired by Salim Zanoun and had 669 members; 88 are from the first Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC), 98 represent the Palestinian population living in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and 483 represent the Palestinian diaspora.[2] While the PNC has a number of PLC members, it is not an organ of the Palestinian Authority. Rather it is the equivalent of PA's PLC.

As of 2012 the main office of the PNC is in Amman and a branch office is located in Ramallah.[4]


The first PNC, composed of 422 representatives, met in Jerusalem in May 1964 and adopted the Palestinian National Covenant (also called Palestinian National Charter). It also established the PLO as the political expression of the Palestinian people and elected Ahmad Al-Shuqeiry as the first chairman of the PLO Executive Committee. At the conference were representatives from Palestinian communities in Jordan, West Bank, the Gaza strip, Syria, Lebanon, Kuwait, Iraq, Egypt, Qatar, Libya, and Algeria.

Subsequent sessions were held in Cairo (1965), Gaza (1966), Cairo (1968 – 1977), Damascus (1979 – 1981), Algiers (1983), Amman (1984), Algiers (1988), Gaza (1996 and 1998), Ramallah (2009)[5][6]

At the February 1969 meeting in Cairo, Yasser Arafat was appointed leader of the PLO. He continued to be PLO leader (sometimes called Chairman, sometimes President) until his death in 2004.

In a November 1988 meeting in Algiers, the PNC unilaterally declared the independence of the Arab State of Palestine.

After the signing of the Oslo Accords, the PNC met in Gaza in April 1996 and voted 504 to 54 to void parts of the Palestinian National Covenant that denied Israel's right to exist, but the charter itself has not been formally changed or re-drafted. One of its most prominent members, the Palestinian-American scholar and activist Edward Said, left the PNC because he believed that the Oslo Accords sold short the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes in pre-1967 Israel and would not lead to a lasting peace.

In December 1998, the PNC met in Gaza at the insistence of the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who called it a condition on the continuation of the peace process. In the presence of the US President Clinton, it reaffirmed again the annulling of the parts of the Covenant which denied Israel's right to exist, but it still did not formally change or re-draft the Covenant.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palestinian_National_Council — Please support Wikipedia.
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1350 news items


WAFA - Palestine News Agency
Thu, 27 Aug 2015 06:18:45 -0700

RAMALLAH, August 27, 2015 (WAFA) – Chairman of the Palestinian National Council (PNC) Salim al-Za'noun Thursday announced that the council would convene an ordinary session on September 15th. President Mahmoud Abbas and al-Za'noun have ...

International Business Times

Sat, 22 Aug 2015 11:41:33 -0700

In reponse, the Palestinian National Council called for an election within a month to select a new executive committee for the PLO. Earlier this week, Palestinian sources said Abbas, 80, would quit his PLO post - which he has for 11 years - along with ...
WAFA - Palestine News Agency
Thu, 27 Aug 2015 03:41:15 -0700

Highlighting the issue of the upcoming meeting of the Palestinian National Council (PNC), al-Quds said the Palestinian Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) rejected the call for the council to convene during September and said it is “a ...


Mon, 17 Aug 2015 13:48:45 -0700

Based on that, we are calling for the Palestinian National Council to meet, hold elections and revive the PLO. Al-Monitor: Why is the Palestinian leadership rather shy about supporting the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement efforts internationally?

International Middle East Media Center

International Middle East Media Center
Sun, 23 Aug 2015 07:48:45 -0700

The Palestinian National Council, the PLO's legislative body, is scheduled to hold an emergency meeting in the next few weeks, to elect new members to the PLO's Executive Committee, a committee member told Ma'an News Agency. abbaserekatmaan.jpg.

Middle East Monitor

Middle East Monitor
Wed, 19 Aug 2015 02:45:00 -0700

This meeting is likely to be held after a Palestinian National Council meeting scheduled to be held next month and before Fatah holds its conference, which is scheduled for late November. The decision to resign is prompted by Mahmoud Abbas's old age ...


Sun, 23 Aug 2015 06:47:08 -0700

1. Gazans nabbed by gunmen Egyptian intelligence in the Sinai were Hamas naval commandos en route to Iran for training. Avi Issacharoff explains that Hamas has simply pushed Egypt too far. 2. If you're following the saga of Mahmoud Abbas's purported ...

The Times of Israel

The Times of Israel
Thu, 20 Aug 2015 12:35:36 -0700

Meantime, Abbas is set to convene the Palestinian National Council of the PLO, to select members for the executive committee. No date has yet been fixed for this gathering but, again, a storm is already under way. Wednesday saw reports that half the ...

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