October 27th

Review: Exploring the diversity of Palestinian identity
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
by Mya Guarnieri - (Opinion) October 27, 2011 - 12:00am

The PLO's UN bid for statehood is divisive. It has furthered America’s and Israel’s drift from the international community as well as confirming, yet again, the United States’ deep bias toward Israel. The request is also controversial within Palestinian circles. Even if it is successful, will it create meaningful change on the ground? Can it end the occupation? What about equal rights for Palestinian citizens of Israel?

The Mideast deal that could have been
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by David Ignatius - (Opinion) October 26, 2011 - 12:00am

To the catalogue of missed opportunities for peace in the Middle East, we can add a tantalizing if also depressing chapter: Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s secret offer in 2008 to create a Palestinian state that would feature international control of holy sites in a divided Jerusalem — a concession many Israelis have said was impossible.

It's Either Abbas or Hamas
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Americans For Peace Now
by Ori Nir - (Blog) October 27, 2011 - 12:00am

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said this week that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas should leave his post soon and that "anyone who replaces (Abbas) will be better than he is." Lieberman called Abbas "an obstacle to peace." The firebrand foreign minister was talking about the same Abbas who Prime Minister Netanyahu called "my partner in peace," the same Abbas who Israel's President Shimon Peres recently characterized as "the best (Palestinian) leader we will work with," the same Abbas who former Shin Bet director Yuval Diskin this week called a "statesman."

Israel Evicting the Indigenous
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Inter Press Service (IPS)
by Jillian Kestler-D'Amours - October 26, 2011 - 12:00am

JERUSALEM, Oct 26, 2011 (IPS) - As Israel moves ahead with a plan to forcibly displace tens of thousands of Palestinian Bedouins in the occupied West Bank, Mohammad Al-Korshan and his family are facing the real prospect of not only losing their home, but their traditional way of life.

Israel denies US request for settlement freeze
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
October 26, 2011 - 12:00am

Israel denied a request by the United States on Thursday to temporarily freeze settlement construction in order to promote peace talks with the Palestinians. In a meeting with Interior Minister Eli Yishai, US Ambassador Dan Shapiro requested the freeze - a repeated Palestinian precondition for negotiations - in order to bolster political goodwill as the US tries to counter Palestinian efforts to seek full UN membership. Shapiro promised that the United States would veto such efforts regardless of Israel's decision on settlements.

U.S. warns Israel: New Jerusalem construction will aid Palestinian bid at UN
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Barak Ravid - October 27, 2011 - 12:00am

The United States urged Israel on Wednesday to halt a plan that would approve new construction in a contentious Jerusalem neighborhood, saying that such a move would harm U.S. efforts to thwart the Palestinian bid for statehood at the United Nations. The Jerusalem District Planning Committee announced late last month that it would approve the construction of 1,100 new housing units in Gilo, despite past U.S. objections concerning any work that would expand the neighborhoof further beyond the Green Line.

Saudi cleric offers cash for Israel soldier kidnap
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
October 26, 2011 - 12:00am

DUBAI, Oct 26 (Reuters) - A prominent Saudi cleric has offered to pay $100,000 to any Palestinian who kidnaps an Israeli soldier, according to his Facebook page. Awad al-Qarni said he had made the offer in response to a similar reward promised by an Israeli family for anyone who catches the person who killed one of its members in 1998, following the exchange this month of more than 1,000 Palestinian prisoners for the captive Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.

Palestine faces US 'pressure' ahead of UNESCO vote
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
October 27, 2011 - 12:00am

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- The Palestinians are in battle with the United States in two United Nations bodies, the Palestinian Authority foreign minister said Wednesday ahead of a vote in Paris. Riyad al-Malki said the vote to admit Palestine as a member of UNESCO was a "small battle leading to the big battle in the Security Council", which will soon vote on Palestine's statehood bid. "We are working hard to counter American pressure on poor countries to discourage them from voting for us”, al-Malki explained in an interview. He hoped more powerful countries would back the smaller ones.

Rocket fired from Gaza explodes in southern Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
October 26, 2011 - 12:00am

A Grad rocket was fired from the Gaza Strip and exploded near Ashdod late on Wednesday. There were no reports of injuries, but a number of people were treated for shock. Sirens went off in Rehovot, Rishon Letzion and other cities in the area and the residents were told to take shelter. Earlier this month, An Israeli air strike wounded three Palestinians in the northern Gaza Strip. An Israeli military spokeswoman said the air strike targeted a militant squad that was preparing to launch rockets across the border into Israel.

Israeli war planes raid Gaza Strip
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
October 27, 2011 - 12:00am

GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Israeli war planes launched four airstrikes in central and southern Gaza early Thursday morning, witnesses and the army said. No injuries were reported. Locals told Ma'an that Israeli fighter jets shelled three open areas and a site used by Hamas' armed wing the al-Qassam Brigades in Khan Younis in the south and Deir al-Balah in central Gaza. The Israeli army said its forces targeted "three terror activity sites" in central Gaza and a weapons storage facility in the southern Gaza Strip. "Direct hits were confirmed," the military said in a statement.

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