April 29th

Abbas: We'll keep pursuing peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Elior Levy - April 28, 2011 - 12:00am

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said Thursday that the Palestinian Authority intends to pursue peace negotiations with Israel despite of its reconciliation with Hamas. Abbas, who met with top "Israel Initiative" representatives, said that "negotiations have been ongoing since 1993, when Arafat recognized the State of Israel and Rabin said he recognized the PLO as the Palestinians' representative. We will continue these talks for the PLO. The new government and the peace talks are two different things."

Jumping the gun
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Amos Harel, Avi Issacharoff - (Opinion) April 29, 2011 - 12:00am

The surprise reconciliation agreement initialed on Wednesday in Cairo by representatives of Fatah and Hamas is largely the outcome of pressure from the Palestinian public. In the Middle East of spring 2011, no Arab leader - and that includes Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas' Khaled Meshal - can completely disregard public opinion.

Israel can redeem itself by recognizing a Palestinian state
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
(Editorial) April 29, 2011 - 12:00am

A ghastly specter has Israel terrified ? the specter of the Palestinian state. More accurately, this specter has been terrifying Israel’s leaders for the past four decades. It has now been replaced by a feeling of perplexity, which grows as we approach the day the Palestinian state is declared in the United Nations, with a sweeping international majority. Despite Israel’s desperate efforts to stall the process, the die appears to be cast ? a Palestinian state will be founded, and soon. Now the question is what Israel should do ? beyond lobbyism, spreading horror and expressing fears.

IDF, PA forces still coordinating despite Fatah-Hamas pact
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Anshel Pfeffer - April 29, 2011 - 12:00am

No decisions have been made by the Israel Defense Forces regarding any changes in security cooperation with Palestinian Authority security forces in the West Bank following the announcement of a reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas. Contacts between IDF officers on the ground and their West Bank Palestinian counterparts are projecting business as usual.

AL praises Palestinian national reconciliation agreement
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
April 28, 2011 - 12:00am

The Arab League (AL) hailed on Thursday the initial reconciliation agreement signed by Palestinian rival groups Hamas and Fatah on the controversial points in Cairo. The AL called to mobilize all Arab and Palestinian efforts in order to transform this agreement into real ground and to start implementation immediately. It also called on the unity of all Palestinian factions and civil societies to provide the required support to end the inter- Palestinian split and root the national reconciliation in a democratic frame.

Jordan welcomes Hamas-Fatah reconciliation deal
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
April 29, 2011 - 12:00am

Jordan said Thursday that it welcomed a reconciliation agreement between the Palestinian movements of Fatah and Hamas, the state-run Petra news agency reported. "Jordan welcomes and supports all efforts to unify the Palestinians. Jordan has been always stressing the need to realize Palestinian reconciliation, which unifies Palestinians and helps them realize their legitimate aspirations in creating their statehood," Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh said Thursday.

Palestinian reconciliation leaves Israel worried
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
April 28, 2011 - 12:00am

News that the two main Palestinian factions, Fatah and Hamas, have agreed to form a national unity government and hold national elections was received with great concern in Israel. "The Palestinian National Authority needs to choose between peace with Israel and peace with Hamas," Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement. "Peace with both is impossible because Hamas aspires to destroy the State of Israel and says so openly," he said.

Palestinian unity deal brings with it risks
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
by Tom Perry - April 28, 2011 - 12:00am

Driven by regional upheaval, a deal to end conflict between Hamas and Fatah is being celebrated by Palestinians but could put at risk Western aid and set off a new phase of confrontation with Israel. Palestinians believe the surprise unity deal unveiled on Wednesday will strengthen their hand as they seek international backing for independence, presenting a united front and ending a divide that has set back their quest for statehood.

U.S. affirms aid to Palestians -- for now
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
by Andrew Quinn - April 28, 2011 - 12:00am

The United States will keep aid flowing to the Palestinian Authority, but future help depends on the new Palestinian government, the State Department said on Thursday. One day after a unity deal between rival Palestinian factions, the State Department said roughly $400 million in annual U.S. funding would be reassessed as the policies of the new leadership emerge. "The current Palestinian government remains in place and our assistance programs continue," State Department spokeswoman Heide Bronke-Fulton said in an email.

Israeli artillery fire injures 4 in central Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
April 29, 2011 - 12:00am

Israeli forces fired on an area east of Al-Bureij camp in central Gaza Thursday evening, injuring four, including a woman and two children, local sources said. Three artillery shells were fired into farm lands east of the refugee camp, eyewitnesses told Ma'an. The injured were taken to Al-Aqsa hospital in the central Gaza region of Al-Wusta, but their injuries were not critical, the sources said.

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