ATFP Condemns East Jerusalem Settlement Expansion Plan, Calls on US to Act
Press Release - Contact Information: Ghaith al-Omari - November 9, 2010 - 12:00am

Washington DC, Nov. 9 -- The American Task Force on Palestine (ATFP) strongly criticized plans announced by the Israeli government to build over 900 new settlement housing units in occupied East Jerusalem and hundreds of additional units elsewhere in the West Bank. The plans were announced during Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu current visit to the United States, during which he is meeting with senior Administration officials.


Israel plans 1,300 new settlement units in sensitive areas of occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank, prompting US and Palestinian protests. Daniel Seidemann and Lara Friendman say PM Netanyahu must have approved the plans. Doyle McManus and Yossi Alpher both think Pres. Obama might now emphasize foreign policy goals. UNSG Ban calls for renewed peace efforts. The PA says Shin Bet officers met with Hamas officials. Israel continues to quarrel with the UN over religious sites in the occupied territories. Hamas bans a commemoration of the late Pres. Arafat in Gaza. Jesse Rosenfeld says extremist settlers are now targeting Israeli citizens. Linda Heard says Israel¹s intransigence is suicidal. Ghassan Khatib says Obama will continue to dictate US policy and Akiva Eldar says he should unveil bold new American peace proposals.

Israel to build more homes in East Jerusalem
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Edmund Sanders - November 8, 2010 - 12:00am


Reporting from Jerusalem — Setting the stage for another potential clash with the Obama administration, Israel said Monday that it would build an additional 1,300 homes on disputed land in East Jerusalem.


After U.S. chides Netanyahu over East Jerusalem construction, more settlement plans unveiled
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Nir Hasson, Chaim Levinson - November 9, 2010 - 12:00am


Israel published two major new settlement plans on Tuesday, threatening to undermine Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's latest trip to Washington. More than 1,000 Jewish homes were approved for construction beyond the Green Line in East Jerusalem, along with a second plan to build 800 homes in the West Bank settlement of Ariel. The U.S. administration had been trying to persuade Netanyahu to declare a second settlement freeze in the territories. The State Department said it was very unhappy when it learned of the plans to build in East Jerusalem.


PA: Shin Bet officers met with top Hamas officials 'over coffee'
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Avi Issacharoff - November 9, 2010 - 12:00am


The Palestinian Authority complained to Israel recently that Shin Bet officers were in contact with high-level Hamas members around Jenin, senior Palestinian sources told Haaretz. The Palestinian sources said that 10 days ago a number of low ranking Shin Bet officers met with senior figures of Hamas and Islamic Jihad.


Netanyahu to Ban: 'Don’t erase 4,000 years of history'
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Tovah Lazaroff - November 9, 2010 - 12:00am


The United Nations should not erase 4,000 years of historic Jewish connection to the Cave of the Patriarchs and Rachel’s Tomb just to score a political point, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told the organization's Secretary General Ban Ki-moon when the two men met Monday evening in New York.


UN chief calls for efforts to revive stalled Israeli-Palestinian talks
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
November 8, 2010 - 12:00am


UNITED NATIONS, Nov. 8 (Xinhua) -- UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Monday that it was vital to break the current diplomatic stalemate, resume the Israeli-Palestinian peace talks and produce results. The UN chief made the statement in his meeting with visiting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Natanyahu against a backdrop of the stalled direct peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians.


Hamas nixes Arafat commemoration in Gaza Strip
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Khaled Abu Toameh - November 8, 2010 - 12:00am


As it has every year since taking control of the Gaza Strip in the summer of 2007, on Monday Hamas announced its decision to ban Fatah supporters from holding a rally in the Gaza Strip to mark the anniversary of Yasser Arafat’s death. Zakariya al-Agha, member of the Fatah Central Committee, said the Hamas government had informed him formally of the decision to ban the rally, which was scheduled to be held on November 11. He said the rally, which had been planned by Fatah, was supposed to be held in Gaza City’s Katibeh Square.


Israel's own citizens are the new target of extremist settlers
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Jesse Rosenfeld - November 9, 2010 - 12:00am


West Bank settlers entered the Arab city under the cover of an armed escort. As they proceeded, security forces chased Palestinian youth down alleys, firing tear gas, stun grenades and foam-covered bullets. Masked in keffiyahs, local high school students who had been striking against the settlers' provocations reorganised, throwing stones at the Israeli forces from behind makeshift barricades.


Peace process diplomacy continues in US
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
November 9, 2010 - 12:00am


WASHINGTON (Ma'an) -- US officials expressed deep disappointment Monday following the announcement of advanced planning for new housing units in occupied East Jerusalem. "It is counterproductive to our efforts to resume direct negotiations between the parties. We have long urged both parties to avoid actions which could undermine trust, including in Jerusalem, and we will continue to work to resume direct negotiations to address this and other final status issues," US State Department spokesman Phillip Crowley said at a DC news meeting with reporters.



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