A proposed Palestinian constitution declares Islam the official religion and cedes some power from the president to a prime minister, according to a partial draft obtained by the Associated Press Monday. An Israeli official rejected the document as an effort to preserve Yasser Arafat's rule.
Those parts of the 229-clause draft Palestinian constitution which were made available by Palestinian officials to the AP do not address some key issues, including the borders with Israel and a solution for Palestinian refugees.
The strongest figure in the government would be the president, who appoints the prime minister. The prime minister would run daily government, but the main policy-maker would be the president, a position held by Arafat since the Palestinian Authority was created in 1994 as a result of interim agreements.
Israel and the U.S. have called for Arafat to be replaced, and Sharon...