April 6th

PLO: Israel approves 3,226 houses in Jerusalem in March
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
April 5, 2010 - 12:00am

Israel approved the construction of a total of 3,226 homes for Jews in the disputed East Jerusalem in March, a report by the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) said on Monday. The biggest projects involved the building of 1,600 housing units in Ramat Shlomo settlement and another 600 homes in a nearby settlement, the report said. Moreover, Jerusalem municipality has drawn up plans and is waiting an approval to build 50,000 houses in the comings months, according to the report.

EU pays 21 million euros for PNA servants' salaries
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
April 6, 2010 - 12:00am

The European Union announced on Monday that it provided the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) with 21 million euros to pay the salaries of working and retired civil servants in the West Bank and Gaza. Christian Burger, the EU representative in Ramallah said in a press release e-mailed to reporters that around 85,000 Palestinian employees would get their salaries for March paid. "The 21 million Euros are part of a European agreement reached with the Palestinian side to pay 158.5 million euros to the Palestinian National Authority during the year 2010," said Burger.

New Barrier To Be Constructed Along Israel-Egypt Border
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
by Nathan Jeffay - April 5, 2010 - 12:00am

Seven years after starting work on the controversial West Bank security barrier, Israel has decided to build another barrier — along its border with Egypt. In March, the Cabinet approved a plan to seal Israel’s southwest border, which is currently secured by only patrols and monitoring devices. Egypt has not raised any objection.

Gandhi says Jewish settlements obstruct establishment of Palestinian state
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
April 5, 2010 - 12:00am

Rajmohan Gandhi, the grandson of late Indian independence leader Mahatma Gandhi, said here Monday that the Jewish settlements in the West Bank obstruct the establishment of the future Palestinian state. Gandhi, chairman of the Initiatives of Change International, an NGO working for peace, reconciliation and human security worldwide, toured the West Bank and met with several Palestinian leaders. Gandhi told a news conference in Ramallah that the Jewish settlements, the road barriers and the separation wall in the West Bank are "more illegal and humiliating than I believed."

Israeli FM warns Palestinians not to declare state
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Matti Friedman - April 6, 2010 - 12:00am

Israel's hard-line foreign minister warned Palestinians against plans to unilaterally declare independence next year, saying in an interview Tuesday that such a move could prompt Israel to annex parts of the West Bank and annul past peace agreements. Avigdor Lieberman also made harsh comments about Turkey, Israel's increasingly alienated ally, saying the Turkish prime minister was coming to resemble Libyan ruler Moammar Gadhafi. Lieberman, who heads an ultranationalist party, has become known for a belligerent tone that has earned him critics abroad and inside Israel.

Court asked to define ‘Israeli’
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Jonathan Cook - April 6, 2010 - 12:00am

A group of Jews and Arabs are fighting in the Israeli courts to be recognised as “Israelis”, a nationality currently denied them, in a case that officials fear may threaten the country’s self-declared status as a Jewish state.

Settlers attack East Jerusalem rally
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
April 6, 2010 - 12:00am

Five people were lightly injured when Israeli settlers attacked a group of protesters gathered in the flashpoint neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah in occupied East Jerusalem on Monday. Ma'an's reporter said settlers stormed the neighborhood near the Al-Ghawi and Hanoun family homes and attacked relatives and activists. Both homes are slated for demolition and confiscation by the Israeli government. Ayman Al-Ghawi, Mahir Hanoun, and three international members of the Would Council of Churches sustained bruises during the incident.

Inquiry clears Al-Husseini of corruption
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
April 6, 2010 - 12:00am

President Mahmoud Abbas informed his former chief of staff Rafiq Al-Husseini Monday that an inquiry had cleared him of charges of nepotism, blackmail, and corruption, but that he was dismissed for "tainting" his office with personal mistakes. The outcome of the inquiry was relayed to Al-Husseini in a letter, who released a statement saying detailing its contents. "I [Abbas] certify that your performance as a chief of staff was excellent and professional, and valuable accomplishments were achieved during your term," Al-Hussein said the letter read.

On how not to forget about Jerusalem
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Martin Indyk - (Opinion) April 6, 2010 - 12:00am

Long after the recent humiliation in Israel of Vice President Joe Biden is forgotten, if not forgiven, and President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton recommit themselves to the “rock solid” relationship with Israel, and the Israeli ambassador in Washington, Michael Oren, downgrades the hurricane to a tropical storm, there will still be the issue of Jerusalem.

US can raise the pressure on Israel without cutting aid
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by David R. Francis - April 5, 2010 - 12:00am

Come April 15, tax day, Josh Ruebner plans to send his group's members to post offices, dozens of them across the country, to "educate" people mailing in their tax forms that the United States should end military aid to Israel.

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