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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 Council normally meets every two years. Resolutions are passed by a simple majority with a quorum of two-thirds. The PNC elects its own chairman.[1]


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.[1] After nomination PNC candidates must be elected by a majority of the entire PNC membership.[1]

As of 2003, the PNC is chaired by Salim Zanoun and has 669 members; 88 are from the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC), 98 represent the Palestinian population living in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and 483 represent the Palestinian diaspora.[1] 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.[2]


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)[3][4]

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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298 news items

Mon, 06 Apr 2015 01:47:34 -0700

Algiers — The speaker of the Palestinian National Council (PNC), Salim Zaanoun, started Sunday a five-day visit to Algeria at the invitation of the speaker of the Council of the Nation (upper house of Parliament), Abdelkader Bensalah. Zaanoun was ...
Thu, 09 Apr 2015 03:11:39 -0700

Algiers — President of the Republic Abdelaziz Bouteflika received, Wednesday in Algiers, the President of the Palestinian National Council Salim Zaanoun. In a statement to the press at the end of the audience, the Palestinian official said that his ...


Fri, 24 Apr 2015 00:30:00 -0700

In 1996, the Palestinian National Council voted to drop its official commitment to the destruction of Israel. In 2005, Benedict XVI was installed in Rome as the 265th Roman Catholic pope. In 2012, Mitt Romney won Republican presidential primaries in ...

Press TV

Press TV
Sat, 18 Apr 2015 02:44:12 -0700

This year is the 41st anniversary of Palestinian Prisoners' Day declared by the Palestinian National Council in 1974. According to the Palestinian Prisoners' Affairs Committee, there are more than 7,000 Palestinian prisoners who are currently held in ...
Wed, 08 Apr 2015 07:05:22 -0700

Algiers — The Speaker of the Palestinian National Council Salim Zaanoun affirmed Tuesday that the Palestinian leaders fully assumed their responsibility concerning Palestine's membership of the International Criminal Court (ICC), reaffirming the ...

International Middle East Media Center

International Middle East Media Center
Wed, 15 Apr 2015 23:01:03 -0700

The Palestinian National Council, the highest authority of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), held a meeting on April 17, 1974, and decided to declare this day a day of solidarity with all detainees, to support their struggle, and to act in ...

Middle East Monitor

Middle East Monitor
Tue, 14 Apr 2015 03:30:00 -0700

The calls came during a press conference organised in Ramallah yesterday to commemorate the 41st anniversary of Palestinian Prisoners' Day declared by the Palestinian National Council in 1974. The activists urged the PA and the United Nations to issue ...
Middle East Eye
Mon, 30 Mar 2015 16:26:07 -0700

This change of attitude was reflected in the Palestinian National Council (PNC) held in Cairo in March 1977, where a clear reference was made in the final resolution to support their struggle and steadfastness and the PLO executive committee put ...

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