Exactly one month before the long-awaited local elections were set to take place across the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip, the Palestinian high court in Ramallah suspended the vote - and it is now unclear whether polling will go ahead at all.
The October 8 vote was meant to elect local councils in more than 400 cities and towns across the occupied Palestinian territories. Thursday's ruling does not definitively cancel the polls, with the court announcing a further hearing for September 21.
The decision to suspend the elections was based on the disqualification of a number of Fatah lists by a Gaza court, and on the inability to hold a vote in occupied East Jerusalem due to Israeli opposition.
"As the elections were obstructed in Jerusalem and because of the procedural hurdles in Gaza, a decision was taken to defer the elections," the court stated.