Council of Ministers
The prime minister must form a government (council of ministers) within three weeks (with a possible two week extension) which must then be approved by the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC). According to the PA’s Basic Law, if the prime minister fails to form a government within the stated deadline or does not obtain the confidence of the PLC, the president must appoint another prime minister.
The position of PA prime minister was created in 2003, in part due to international criticism of the then president, Yasser Arafat.
Initially, prime ministers were Fatah members, reflecting the party’s electoral majority in the PLC. These were Mahmoud Abbas (2003) and Ahmed Qurei (2003-2006). Following Hamas election in the 2006 legislative elections Ismail Haniyeh then became prime minister. However, following the international boycott of the Hamas-led government, the prime minister became an independent ‘technocratic’ figure: first under Salam Fayyad (2007-2013); and then under Rami Hamdallah (2013-2019). The latter formed a short lived government of national consensus endorsed by Hamas in June 2014. The composition of Hamdallah’s last government (2015-2019) can be found here.
In March 2019, President Abbas appointed Mohammad Shtayyeh prime minister following the forced resignation of Hamdallah.