ATFP Welcomes Reaffirmation of US Commitment to Palestinian Statehood by Secretary of State-designate Clinton
Press Release - Contact Information: Hussein Ibish - January 13, 2009 - 1:00am

Washington, DC, Jan. 13 -- The American Task Force on Palestine (ATFP) welcomed explicit and strongly worded support for peace in the Middle East based on the creation of a Palestinian state to live alongside Israel from Secretary of State-designate Clinton at her confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee today.  

Israeli officials are claiming that as result of the offensive in Gaza Hamas has been "weakened but not destroyed" (1),(2). The offensive has forced tens of thousands of Palestinians to flee their homes (3). Israeli leaders debate how and when to end the 17-day operation (5). Egypt is urging Hamas to agree to a truce (6). Israel is facing increased international pressure due to the mounting civilian death toll in Gaza (9),(10). Secretary of State-designate Hillary Clinton reaffirms commitment to Palestinian state at confirmation hearing (11).

Clinton Sympathizes With Palestinians In Confirmation Hearing
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Huffington Post
by Ryan Grim - January 13, 2009 - 1:00am

Hillary Clinton sent a message to Israel Tuesday during her Secretary of State confirmation hearing testimony, telling the Foreign Relations Committee that because of the conflict in Gaza "we have ...been reminded of the tragic humanitarian costs of conflict in the Middle East, and pained by the suffering of Palestinian and Israeli civilians."

Israelis United on Gaza War as Censure Rises Abroad
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Ethan Bronner - January 12, 2009 - 1:00am

JERUSALEM — To Israel’s critics abroad, the picture could not be clearer: Israel’s war in Gaza is a wildly disproportionate response to the rockets of Hamas, causing untold human suffering and bombing an already isolated and impoverished population into the Stone Age, and it must be stopped. Yet here in Israel very few, at least among the Jewish population, see it that way.

Groups say Israel failed to plan for the safety of Gaza civilians
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from McClatchy News
by Ahmed Abu Hamda, Shashank Bengali - January 13, 2009 - 1:00am

Israel's offensive in Gaza has forced as many as 90,000 Gazans to abandon their homes, and thousands more may soon have to flee in search of safety, humanitarian aid organizations said Monday. For civilians caught in the crossfire between Hamas militants and Israel's military, however, there's no escape to safety abroad and no sure sanctuary in Gaza. Some families have had to move repeatedly to escape the violence.

Neither Israel nor Hamas can be choosy in Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Amir Oren - January 13, 2009 - 1:00am

To judge by the sights and sounds on the Negev's roads, at military staff headquarters and at training facilities, Operation Cast Lead is about to take off to new heights.

Everything is complicated, but nothing is impossible
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Hamida Ghafour - January 13, 2009 - 1:00am

The roads from Cairo to the northern Sinai peninsula are patrolled by Egyptian police and intelligence officers and many checkpoints have been set up along the way since Israel began its attack on the Gaza Strip. At the Rafah crossing on the border between Egypt and Gaza, the Egyptians are allowing through only convoys of medical aid, and accepting Palestinians injured by Israeli attacks. In Cairo the wail of ambulances continues day and night as the wounded are taken to local hospitals for treatment.

Report: Hamas agrees to Turkey troops on Gaza-Egypt border
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Avi Issacharoff, Yoav Stern - January 13, 2009 - 1:00am

Hamas sources have said that the Palestinian militant organization would agree to the deployment of Turkish troops along Gaza's border with Egypt, the London-based Arabic daily Al-Hayat reported Tuesday. "We trust Turkey and its role as an Islamic country," the Hamas officials said. They were referring to a proposal recently submitted to Hamas' Damascus-based political chief Khaled Meshal by Turkish officials.

Egypt wants Hamas to sign up to truce deal 'now'
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Agence France Presse (AFP)
January 13, 2009 - 1:00am

CAIRO (AFP) — Egypt was on Tuesday holding talks with Hamas on Cairo's Gaza truce proposal, with an official calling for the Islamists to sign up "now" in the hope of announcing a ceasefire before the end of the week. A Hamas delegation was to hold a fresh round of talks with Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Suleiman, as Israel's offensive ploughed on for an 18th day and diplomatic efforts to end the bloodshed plodded forward.

Israel's Top Leaders Weighing Their Next Steps in Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by Griff Witte - January 13, 2009 - 1:00am

Israel's leaders debated Monday how and when to bring their 17-day-old offensive in Gaza to an end, as battles continued to rage on the edge of Gaza City and as Israeli reservists flowed into the territory, ready for a possible deeper push into urban areas. The moves came as negotiators in Cairo sought to reach a cease-fire agreement, hoping to put a halt to violence that medical officials in the Gaza Strip said has claimed the lives of more than 900 Palestinians, as many as half of them civilians. Thirteen Israelis have been killed, three of them civilians.

American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017