In his first official speech as Foreign Minister, Avigdor Lieberman declares that Israel is not bound to the understandings reached at the 2007 Annapolis Conference (1). A Palestinian man wielding an ax kills an Israeli teenager in the West Bank (2). A series of articles discuss how the new Netanyahu-led Israeli government may handle the peace process (4) (5) (6). The new Israeli government is also warned that a refusal to continue with serious peace negotiations could result in the dissolution of the Palestinian Authority (8). Hamas pledges to continue weapons smuggling into Gaza (11).

Palestinian Authority warns on dissolution
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Financial Times
by Tobias Buck, Roula Khalaf - April 1, 2009 - 12:00am

The new Israeli government was warned on Wednesday that a refusal to continue serious peace negotiations intended to establish a Palestinian state could force the Palestinian Authority to dissolve itself. The warning, by a senior PA official, came only a day after Israel’s new rightwing government, led by Benjamin Netanyahu as prime minister, took office. It also came as Israel’s new foreign minister said the government did not feel obligated by the commitments made during the US-sponsored Annapolis peace initiative.

In Israel, Netanyahu and super-sized Cabinet sworn in
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Richard Boudreaux - April 1, 2009 - 12:00am

Benjamin Netanyahu, taking office as Israeli prime minister amid heckling by leftist and Arab lawmakers, offered Tuesday to seek a "permanent arrangement" for limited Palestinian self-rule. "We do not wish to rule another people," the conservative leader declared in a speech to the Knesset, Israel's parliament. Without endorsing the goal of sovereignty for the Palestinians, he said he favored an accord giving them "all the powers necessary to rule themselves, except those that would threaten Israel's existence and security."

Mr. Netanyahu, Show Us Your Courage and Declare Peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Middle East Times
(Editorial) April 2, 2009 - 12:00am

Peace is often harder to declare than war. It takes an instant to declare war, but generations to make peace. In the case of Israel and the Arabs it's been three generations. More than enough time. It also takes a brave and strong individual to declare peace. Israel has had many brave leaders, but only two – so far – brave enough to venture on the road to peace: Menachem Begin and Ariel Sharon.

World wants Palestinian state, Peres tells Netanyahu
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
April 1, 2009 - 12:00am

Israeli President Shimon Peres told new Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday that the world backed the Palestinian quest for a state, a goal the incoming right-wing leader has not endorsed. "The government you lead must make a supreme effort to move the peace process forward on all fronts," Peres said at the state ceremony at which former prime minister Ehud Olmert handed over formally to Netanyahu, who was sworn in on Tuesday.

In Defense of Genocide: An Arab Summut Embraces the Butcher of Darfur
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
(Editorial) April 1, 2009 - 12:00am

FOR DECADES, summit meetings of the Arab League have resounded with rhetoric about the alleged "double standards" of the West in enforcing U.N. resolutions or respecting international law. No communique of the group -- including the one issued from its summit this week in Doha, Qatar -- has been complete without a demand that conflicts be resolved "within the framework of international legitimacy."

Hamas: We won't stop arms smuggling
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Ali Waked - April 2, 2009 - 12:00am

Since Operation Cast Lead concluded some 22 tons of explosives and 45 tons of raw materials used to manufacture weapons have been smuggled into the Gaza Strip, Shin Bet chief Yuval Diskin reported this week. On Thursday Hamas pledged that the smuggling from the Sinai Peninsula will continue. Abu Ubeida, Hamas' military wing's spokesman, said that his group will refuse to sign an agreement with Egypt that calls for the cessation of weapon smuggling, "or any other agreement that might undermine the resistance in Palestine."

Israeli 13-year-old killed in West Bank ax attack
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Sebastian Scheiner - April 2, 2009 - 12:00am

An ax-wielding Palestinian militant went on a rampage Thursday in a Jewish settlement in the West Bank, killing an Israeli 13-year-old and wounding a 7-year-old boy before fleeing the area. The attack posed an important test for Israel's new prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, who has promised a firm hand against militants and expressed skepticism about prospects for peace. Government spokesman Mark Regev called it a "senseless act of brutality against innocents."

Repression campaign
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
(Editorial) April 2, 2009 - 12:00am

The rapid investigation of testimony from Operation Cast Lead veterans who told of the killing of civilians, vandalism of property, and use of phosphorus bombs in Gaza shows that the military justice system can act quickly under public pressure. One week's worth of an expedited probe launched by the Military Police Investigation Department was enough for the Military Advocate General to rule that the soldiers lied and exaggerated their statements during a symposium of the Yitzhak Rabin pre-military preparatory academy, and to close the case.

Peace move gains urgency
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Gulf News
by George S. Hishmeh - (Analysis) April 1, 2009 - 12:00am

Why does Bibi Netanyahu think that everyone will believe him when he ventriloquates, especially when he is talking about life-and-death issues like peace with the Arabs, particularly the Palestinians?

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