Arab residents of Jerusalem will participate in the upcoming Palestinian general elections by casting their ballots or presenting their candidacy in the neighborhoods where they live, a Palestinian Authority official said Sunday.Mutasem Tayem, director-general of the “Jerusalem Unit” in the PA President’s Office, said Arab residents who hold Israeli-issued ID cards will be able to vote and present their candidacy “despite all Israeli measures aiming to prevent them from participating in the parliamentary and presidential election.”The parliamentary vote has been set for May 22, while the presidential election is scheduled to take place on July 31. Arab residents of Jerusalem participated in previous PA parliamentary and presidential elections by casting their votes in Israeli post offices in the city.According to the 1995 Israeli-Palestinian Interim Agreement (Annex II), “A number of Palestinians of Jerusalem will vote in the [Palestinian] elections through services rendered in five post offices in Jerusalem.”International observers will be present in the post offices on the day of the elections.No decision has been taken yet regarding the participation of Jerusalem Arabs in the PA elections, a senior Israeli government official told The Jerusalem Post.Arabs from Jerusalem will participate in the upcoming Palestinian elections “in accordance with international agreements,” Tayem told the PA’s Palestine TV. The PA elections will take place in Arab neighborhoods where the residents live, a reference to Arab communities located within the boundaries of the Jerusalem Municipality, he said.“Their participation is in their hands and in the hands of the occupation,” Tayem said. “The participation of the [Arab] Jerusalemites is a Palestinian national decision based on international legitimacy. We won’t wait for permission from the occupation to hold the elections in Jerusalem.”The Palestinian Central Elections Commission is entitled to work in Jerusalem to ensure the participation of the Arab residents in the elections, whether by voting or presenting their candidacy, he said.“Our battle in Jerusalem is a battle for sovereignty over the city,” he added. “There will be no elections without Jerusalem.”Nabil Sha’ath, who serves as PA President Mahmoud Abbas’s “special representative,” said Arab residents of Jerusalem would cast their ballots in Israeli post offices in the city.The Palestinians have obtained the international community’s agreement to hold the vote through the Israeli post offices, he told Anadolu Agency, a Turkish state-run news agency. Israel has thus far not objected to the participation of the Arab residents of Jerusalem in the Palestinian elections, he said.Abbas and other Palestinian officials have in the past said there would be no elections without the participation of Arab residents of Jerusalem. Earlier this year, PA Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh said the Palestinians would ask Israel “to allow our people in Jerusalem” to participate in the elections.