- Title: Pandemic boosts Palestinian premier as potential Abbas successor
- Date: 6th May 2020
- Summary: RAMALLAH, WEST BANK (FILE - SEPTEMBER 13, 2011) (REUTERS) SHTAYYEH AS TOP ABBAS AIDE AT PRESS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (English) MOHAMMAD SHTAYYEH, THEN A TOP ABBAS AIDE AND MEMBER OF PLO EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE, SAYING: "We are going to the United Nations, we are going to the Security Council." NEAR RAMALLAH, WEST BANK (FILE) (REUTERS) SHTAYYEH WITH ABBAS
- Embargoed: 20th May 2020 12:34
- Keywords: Mohammed Shtayyeh Palestinians coronavirus health prime minister
- Location: RAMALLAH, NEAR RAMALLAH, WEST BANK
- City: RAMALLAH, NEAR RAMALLAH, WEST BANK
- Country: Palestinian Territories
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA006CCSMBLZ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: One man has become the face of the Palestinians' response to the COVID-19 crisis, and it isn't aging President Mahmoud Abbas.
Rather, it is his prime minister, Mohammad Shtayyeh: an economist-turned-politician whose rapid rise and finesse in combating the pandemic has irked establishment politicians and led many to believe he will one day succeed Abbas as president.
For Shtayyeh -- an unelected Abbas appointee -- the urgency to halt the virus in the Israeli-occupied West Bank has helped reinvigorate the Palestinian Authority (PA), long viewed as corrupt and unproductive.
Some 96 percent of West Bank Palestinians trust the way the PA under Shtayyeh is dealing with the virus, according to a recent poll from the Jerusalem Media and Communications Centre.
The PA in March moved quickly to impose a full lockdown and ramp up testing in areas under its control in the West Bank, fearing the disease would overwhelm its weak health system.
In three months, the Palestinian have recorded two deaths but only 345 cases, which has largely been viewed as a success.
(Production: Suheir Sheikh, Ismael Khader, Saed Howari, Nuha Sharaf
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