Palestinian Basic Law
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The Palestinian Basic Law

A collection of various propsals and amendments to the Basic Law of Palestine.

PCHR condemns mass arrests

The PCHR condemns mass arrests by Hamas supporters in the West Bank and Fatah supporters in Gaza respectively. In a press release Sunday, the PCHR expresses concern “that these arrests are an act of reprisal in response to arrest campaigns  as well as raids and closure of dozens of Fatah-affiliated NGO’s and sports clubs in the Gaza Strip”.

Read: PCHR, “PCHR Condemns Arrest Campaign against Hamas Supporters in the West Bank,” press release, ref: 67/2008, 27 July 2008,

The mass arrests were also condemned by the Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights.
Read: Al-Mezan, “Over 122 Institutions, Offices Are Targeted by Security in Gaza: Al Mezan Condemns Illegal Mass Arrests and Raids on Institutions,” press release, ref: 70-2008, 27 July 2008,

Read: Reuters Alertnet, “Fatah-Hamas tensions surge after Gaza bombings,” 27 July 2008,

Read: Reuters Alertnet, “Abbas condemns Gaza violence, favours dialogue,” 27 July 2008,

In a press release Saturday, the PCHR condemned the mass arrests conducted by the de facto cabinet in Gaza after the Friday bombings in the Gaza Strip. PCHR points out that citizens have the right to form associations under the Palestinian Basic Law and that the closures represent “a flagrant violation against civil society”.

Read: Reuters Alertnet, “Hamas arrest 120 Fatah men after 6 die in Gaza blast,” 26. July 2008,

Read: Maan News, “PCHR condemns Gaza City bombing and de facto government response,” 26 July 2008,

Read: PCHR, “PCHR Condemns Gaza Beach Crime and the Response of the Government,” press release, ref: 66/2008, 26 July 2008,

The de facto cabinet has implied that Fatah and the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah may have been behind the explosions. The cabinet has also accused accused Fatah-affiliated media outlets of “celebrating Friday’s explosions.”

Read: Maan News, “De facto government instructs security services to find those responsible for Friday bombing,” 26 July 2008,

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Facts about the Basic Law

The Palestinian Basic Law is to function as a temporary constitution for the Palestinian Authority until the establishment of an independent state and a permanent constitution for Palestine can be achieved.

The Basic Law was passed by the Palestinian Legislative Council in 1997 and ratified by President Yasser Arafat in 2002. It has subsequently been amended twice; in 2003 the political system was changed to introduce a prime minister. In 2005 it was amended to conform to the new Election Law. The 2003 reform was comprehensive and affected the whole nature of the Palestinian political system, whereas the 2005 amendment was only minor and affected only a few paragraphs.

A parallel effort has been made to draft a permanent Palestinian constitution for an independent state, but this was shelved in favor of amending the existing Basic Law.

About this site

This website presents a collection of various drafts and amendments related to the Basic Law and other constitutional texts that have been compiled from various other sources.

You can also expect to find links to news items and reports that are of relevance to Palestinian constitutional law, the electoral framework, political reform and the PA branches of government.

The website was created by the Norwegian journalists Erik Bolstad and Tonje M. Viken in February 2008. The site is a private initiative and has no affiliation to any organizations or authorities.

All external links are purely for information purposes and do not necessarily reflect the views of the editors of this site.

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