October 18th

A boon to Hamas, at Fatah's expense
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
(Editorial) October 18, 2011 - 12:00am

At a time when the Shalit deal is raising the stock of Hamas in the eyes of Palestinians in the territories, the Netanyahu government is making an effort to depict Fatah, committed to reaching a negotiated agreement with Israel, as devoid of purpose. Not a week goes by without news of a new building project in the territories or in East Jerusalem.

Hamas success may push Abbas further down UN path
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Alertnet
by Tom Perry - (Analysis) October 17, 2011 - 12:00am

The huge Palestinian prisoner release won by Hamas in exchange for a lone Israeli soldier has drawn praise from those in the Middle East who believe violence is the only way to deal with Israel, unsettling President Mahmoud Abbas' camp and chipping away at what faith is left in his strategy of negotiating peace. To shore up his domestic credibility, Abbas may now feel he has to escalate the diplomatic offensive he is waging for Palestinian statehood at the United Nations, raising the prospect of more tension with the United States and Israel.

Hard Questions and Tough Answers with Yossi Alphe
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Americans For Peace Now
(Interview) October 17, 2011 - 12:00am

Q. Israel and Hamas have agreed to exchange more than 1,000 Palestinian prisoners for IDF soldier Gilad Shalit? Why now, after more than five years of negotiating?

Palestinian envoy is asked to leave Ottawa after controversial tweet
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Globe and Mail
by Campbell Clark - (Analysis) October 17, 2011 - 12:00am

The Palestinian envoy to Canada has been told she’s not welcome in Ottawa after she tweeted a link to a video that the federal government deemed an offensive diatribe against Jews. Now, Linda Sobeh Ali, the chargé d’affaires of the Palestinian delegation in Ottawa, is just one cut above persona non grata. The Canadian government called her in for a high-level dressing down, made a formal protest to the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank, and has decided to “limit communication” with her until a replacement arrives.

Israel-Palestinian mediators to miss 1st deadline
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Google News
by Bradley S. Klapper - (Analysis) October 17, 2011 - 12:00am

The U.S. and other Mideast mediators won't be able to revive direct Israeli-Palestinian peace talks by the end of this weekend, missing the first deadline in a plan to reach a two-state agreement by the end of next year and sidestep a contentious U.N. vote over Palestinian statehood without defined borders, U.S. officials said Monday. State Department spokesman Mark Toner said the "quartet" of Mideast mediators will meet separately with Israeli and Palestinian officials next week, but Israel and the Palestinians weren't returning to the same negotiating table.

Israel’s Mossad gets dragged into latest British political scandal
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Media Line
by Arieh O'Sullivan - (Analysis) October 18, 2011 - 12:00am

British media have speculated that the man behind the fall of their minister of defense was in cahoots with Israel’s famed intelligence agency, Mossad, perhaps unwittingly, as the perfect spy. Adam Werritty, an unofficial “chief of staff” to Defense Minister Liam Fox - a much respected, staunch conservative who quit in disgrace this weekend - boasted extraordinary access, had no security vetting and plotted to overthrow the Iranian regime.

IDF warns soldiers of kidnappings ahead of Gilad Shalit's release
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Anshel Pfeffer - (Analysis) October 18, 2011 - 12:00am

The Israel Defense Forces is telling its combat units that soldiers should make sure not to become "another Gilad Shalit" and be abducted. "I deliver this message in any discussion in which the topic of Gilad Shalit or other POWs comes up," an infantry battalion commander said. "Under no circumstances should a soldier be taken hostage. Our soldiers do their utmost to prevent this from happening - they [are ordered] to fire at a group of abductors even if that means their IDF comrade would be killed. And the soldiers understand this fully: They cannot become another Gilad Shalit."

Quartet to meet Israelis, Palestinians separately
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
October 18, 2011 - 12:00am

Envoys of the Middle East Quartet will meet separately with Israeli and Palestinian representatives in Jerusalem on Oct. 26 as they seek a way forward on peace talks, the State Department said Monday. "Quartet envoys will be meeting with the parties in Jerusalem on October 26 with the aim to begin preparations and develop an agenda for proceeding with the negotiations," State Department spokesman Mark Toner said, adding afterwards that "separate" meetings would be held.

Minister: Detainees suspend strike after deal on isolation
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
October 18, 2011 - 12:00am

Palestinians jailed in Israel suspended a three-week hunger strike on Monday, the minister of detainee affairs in Ramallah said. Issa Qaraqe told the official Wafa news agency that prisoners ended the strike after Israeli prison authorities agreed to end the practice of solitary confinement. Israel will stop holding detainees in isolation on Tuesday, immediately after releasing 477 prisoners in a swap deal to free captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, Qaraqe said.

Hamas feeling pressure amid changes in Middle East
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Edmund Sanders - (Analysis) October 17, 2011 - 12:00am

This seaside territory was abuzz with preparations for an elaborate homecoming ceremony, including a 21-gun salute, tearful family reunions and the largest stage ever built in the Gaza Strip in order to hold scores of Palestinian prisoners after their expected release Tuesday in exchange for Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit. But for Hamas, the Islamic militant group that controls Gaza and negotiated the swap with Israel, the hard part will be sustaining those high public spirits after the stage is dismantled and the decorative banners torn down.

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