Palestinians say public employees cannot be paid if Israel withholds tax revenues. Some see the Fatah-Hamas deal as a new chance for peace. Jimmy Carter says the US should support the agreement. Fatah plans to review its strategies. France increases aid to the PA to offset Israel’s actions, the UN asks Israel to release the funds, and the US calls the Israeli move “premature.” PM Fayyad calls the fiscal situation “impossible.” The head of J Street says Israel must act now on peace. Pres. Abbas says Palestinians are determined to win UN recognition in September. Pres. Peres says Israel might negotiate with Hamas. The Globe and Mail profiles a Palestinian billionaire. Ha’aretz says Israel is evading reality. Pres. Obama sends Israel Independence Day greetings. Amr Mousa says Hamas is not a terrorist organization. Issa Bourshieh says Israel must embrace its Arab citizens. A powerful film about Palestinian nonviolent protests against occupation is released on DVD. CUNY reverses its decision not to honor Tony Kushner. The daughter of a right-wing Israeli Rabbi talks about meeting Abbas. Palestinian citizens of Israel feel disenfranchised. Attention is on the effect of the Palestinian unity deal on Hamas’ policies, and Asharq Al-Awsat interviews one of its leading figures. Ghassan Khatib says Palestinian dialogue may foster Hamas moderation, and Mkhaimar Abusada says the international community can help, but Yossi Alpher says Hamas has not changed yet.

AN ISRAELI VIEW Hamas has not turned the corner on Israel and violence
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bitterlemons
by Yossi Alpher - (Opinion) May 9, 2011 - 12:00am

The signing of the Fateh-Hamas reconciliation agreement last week provided us with a host of policy statements by Hamas leaders that could conceivably shed light on the likelihood of the agreement actually reaching fruition. Some may be tempted to see in them an indication of creeping moderation. But overall, the circumstances point to negative prospects.

A PALESTINIAN VIEW An opportunity for Hamas moderation
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bitterlemons
by Mkhaimar Abu Sada - (Opinion) May 9, 2011 - 12:00am

The signing of the reconciliation agreement between Fateh and Hamas can be considered a golden opportunity for the Palestinian people and their cause. Four years have passed since Hamas took over the Gaza Strip in June 2007 after violent clashes with its rival Fateh. Four years of political split and two governments, one led by Fateh in the West Bank and the other one led by Hamas in Gaza. Four years of incitement, hatred, imprisonment and torture of political opponents.

A PALESTINIAN VIEW Dialogue fosters moderation
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bitterlemons
by Ghassan Khatib - (Opinion) May 9, 2011 - 12:00am

While examining the possible consequences of the reconciliation agreement between Fateh and Hamas, it is important to understand that Hamas is like any other political entity: it includes within its ranks different tendencies. These, in turn, can be developed or stunted, creating moderation or radicalization.

Asharq Al-Awsat talks to Hamas's Izzat al-Rishq
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Asharq Alawsat
by Sawsan Abu-Husain - (Interview) May 9, 2011 - 12:00am

Cairo, Asharq Al-Awsat- According to Dr. Izzat al-Rishq, member of the Hamas Movement's Political Bureau, the Palestinian factions that signed the Cairo agreement are in continuous meetings to complete the discussion of all issues as soon as possible. In an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat, he added that many meetings were held in Cairo both before and after the signing in order to take practical steps on the ground to show the Palestinian people that the agreement is not just ink on paper but rather a continuous action to restore the legitimate Palestinian rights.

World watches to see how far Hamas will compromise in peace with Fatah
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Jonathan Cook - May 10, 2011 - 12:00am

The landmark reconciliation deal reached last week by the Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas required compromises on both sides, but none more so than by the Islamist movement that rules the Gaza Strip. Reflecting on the deal that brought their four-year rift to an end, Khaled Meshaal, the Damascus-based leader of Hamas, said afterward that his side had conceded autonomy on "how to manage the resistance". The use of violence - along with negotiations with Israel, domestic governance and foreign affairs - will now require Fatah's approval, Mr Meshaal told The Wall Street Journal.

For Israel’s Arabs, sense of disenfranchisement as Israel marks 63rd birthday
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
by Dina Kraft - May 8, 2011 - 12:00am

In an elegant limestone building in a Jerusalem neighborhood that before 1948 was home to the city’s Palestinian elite, a group of Jewish and Arab Israeli academics recently tried to untangle one of Israel’s most complex and charged questions: the status of its Arab minority.

Rabbi Ovadia Yosef’s leftist daughter, Adina Bar Shalom, talks about meeting Mahmoud Abbas
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
by Noam Sheizaf - May 9, 2011 - 12:00am

The delegation of Israelis who traveled last week to the West Bank headquarters of the Palestinian Authority, the Mukata in Ramallah, consisted mostly of the usual suspects. There were a few newcomers, such as Israeli tycoon Idan Ofer, but for the most part they were Israeli former officials, academics and activists who often talk about the need to advance the peace process and move toward a two-state solution.

Tony Kushner to receive CUNY honorary degree after all
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
May 10, 2011 - 12:00am

Trustees of the City University of New York approved an honorary degree for playwright Tony Kushner, reversing an earlier decision. The executive committee of the CUNY board of trustees voted Monday night to award Kushner an honorary doctorate during commencement ceremonies next month. The committee can reverse decisions of the full board. CUNY's board on May 2 had struck the playwright's name from a list of those scheduled to receive honorary degrees at CUNY's John Jay College of Criminal Justice after a university trustee, Jeffrey Wiesenfeld, attacked Kushner as anti-Israel.

UN chief presses Israel to release Palestinian funds
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Guardian
by Harriet Sherwood - May 8, 2011 - 12:00am

Israel is under pressure to release tax revenues belonging to the Palestinian Authority (PA) which it has blocked in response to the reconciliation agreement between Fatah and Hamas. The UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, and an umbrella group of countries that make donations to the PA have urged the Israeli government to hand over a sum of around 300m shekels (£53.1m). The income is used to pay the salaries of PA employees and to provide services.

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