Official Observer Delegation for January 9 Palestinian Presidential Election

(U.S. State Department, by Adam Ereli) The United States is sending an Official U.S. Observer Delegation to the January 9, 2005 Palestinian Presidential Election. The delegation will be led by Senators John Sununu (R – NH) and Joseph R Biden, Jr. (D – DE) of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee; and will include four Congressional staff members, and prominent Palestinian-Americans George Salem and Ziad Asali. David Pearce, U.S. Consul General, Jerusalem, will join the delegation when it arrives.

The U.S. Delegation will visit polling sites, meet with senior Israeli and Palestinian officials and prior to departing, will make an assessment of the election process. The Delegation’s visit will demonstrate that the U.S. is fully committed to a free, fair election process that produces a credible result. This outcome will require close coordination between Israel and the Palestinians, and we are working with both parties to support successful administration of the election. We recognize the extent of Israeli and Palestinian cooperative efforts during the period leading to the elections. We hope that this cooperation will continue and will lead to further steps toward realization of the President’s vision of two states living side by side in peace and security.