November 23rd

Palestinian membership threatening UNESCO programs
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Elaine Ganley - November 23, 2011 - 1:00am

The Palestinians can raise their flag alongside those of 194 full-fledged nations at UNESCO after signing a document Wednesday finally giving them a voice within the vast U.N. system — bringing pride across the Arab world yet hobbling the agency's pro-democracy projects around the globe. Last month's decision by the Paris-based U.N. education and cultural organization to give Palestine membership triggered an immediate funding cutoff by the U.S. that will force UNESCO to scale down literacy and development programs in countries like Iraq, Afghanistan or the new nation of South Sudan.

Israeli government press adviser quits
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Guardian
by Roy Greenslade - November 23, 2011 - 1:00am

One of the Israeli government's press advisers, Eva Berger, has resigned because she claims journalistic freedom is being eroded. Berger, a member of the government press office's advisory council (GPO), said: "The council's objective is to grant its approval of an old wrong, in the guise of democracy - and I will not lend my hand to this." She linked her resignation to government proposals that many see as restricting freedom of expression and creating obstacles to press freedom.

Ban calls on PM to hand over Palestinian money
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Agence France Presse (AFP)
November 23, 2011 - 1:00am

UN chief Ban Ki-moon has called on Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to hand over tax payments owed to the Palestinian Authority and to stop settlement activity, his spokesman said. The UN secretary general "stressed the need to de-escalate" Israeli-Palestinian tensions that have heightened since the Palestinian bid to become a member of the United Nations, said spokesman Martin Nesirky, giving an account of telephone talks between Ban and Netanyahu Tuesday.

Palestinians charged with killing West Bank man, baby to avenge 'price tag' attack
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Chaim Levinson - November 23, 2011 - 1:00am

Palestinians suspected in the killing of a West Bank resident and his infant son wished to avenge the '"price tag" torching of a nearby mosque, an indictment submitted to an Israel Defense Forces court said on Tuesday. In September, Israel Police confirmed that a road accident that killed Asher, who was 25-years-old and his one-year-old son Yonatan Palmer near Kiryat Arba, may have occurred after a rock was thrown at their vehicle.

Egypt committed to Israel peace deal despite revived unrest, officials say
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Barak Ravid - November 23, 2011 - 1:00am

Top Egyptian figures have delivered conciliatory messages to Jerusalem in the past two days, insisting that Egypt is committed to its peace accord with Israel, and will act to uphold it. Senior Foreign Ministry figures say these messages were relayed to outgoing Ambassador Yitzhak Levanon during a farewell visit he paid to Cairo on Sunday and Monday.

Prominent Israeli official calls for military preparations to re-enter Sinai
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al-Masry Al-Youm
by Jordan Gerstler-Holton - November 23, 2011 - 1:00am

In the midst of escalating violence between Egyptian protesters and security forces, former Deputy Chief Staff of Israeli Defense Forces Uzi Dayan is calling for the creation of an Israeli “intervention force” to fight terrorism in Sinai if necessary, the Israeli daily Yediot Aharonot reported Wednesday. “We must prepare for the worst-case scenario whereby the Islamists come to power,” said Dayan. "In the first stage, we have to prepare for increased terror in Sinai. There are worrying signs of terrorist Islam in Sinai already.”

Israel girding for possible trouble for Egypt pact
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Josef Federman - November 23, 2011 - 1:00am

Israel expects a "grave erosion" in its peace agreement with Egypt and is even preparing for the possibility of the historic deal collapsing altogether, a Cabinet minister said Wednesday, in the first official assessment of the unrest rocking Israel's southern neighbor. The comments by Matan Vilnai, the minister for civil defense and a retired military general, reflected the government's grave concerns that Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood could make major gains and even win elections in Egypt that begin next week.

Implementation of reconciliation pact looks likely for Hamas-Fatah meeting
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
(Analysis) November 23, 2011 - 1:00am

The upcoming meeting between Palestinians' rival parties Fatah and Hamas slated for Thursday in Cairo has sufficient drive towards implementing a reconciliation pact the two sides inked earlier in May. Since the Palestinian division widened in June 2007 when Hamas seized control of the Gaza Strip, dialogues between the two parties have so far failed to achieve substantive reconciliation on the ground.

Abbas, Mashaal to meet in Cairo despite Egypt unrest
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Agence France Presse (AFP)
November 23, 2011 - 1:00am

President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas chief Khalid Mashaal will meet in Cairo this week despite the unrest rocking Egypt, Hamas and Fatah officials said on Tuesday. Egypt has been shaken in recent days by renewed protests calling for the ruling military council to step aside and allow an interim civilian government to take power. But officials of the rival parties said the unrest would not derail a planned meeting between Mashaal and Abbas later this week.

New Winds in Mideast Favor Hamas
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Stephen Farrell - November 23, 2011 - 1:00am

For years, the imposing black gate that sealed the border between Egypt and Gaza symbolized the pain and isolation that decades of conflict have wrought on this tiny coastal strip, especially under Hamas in recent years.

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