230 more colonist homes to be built in occupied Jerusalem
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Gulf News
by Nasouh Nazzal - January 3, 2012 - 1:00am

Ramallah: Israeli authorities announced the construction of 230 new colonist homes in occupied East Jerusalem. 117 homes will be built in Gabal Abu Ghunaim area close to Al Aqsa compound and the second tender of 113 homes will be built in two colonies of Gosh Etzion south of Occupied East Jerusalem. The building of more illegal Jewish homes are expected to be announced in the coming weeks which will be expanding the colonies of Gifat Hazat and Har Adar.

West Bank theatre founder wanted by Israel after amnesty deal revoked
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Guardian
by Harriet Sherwood - January 1, 2012 - 1:00am

A former Palestinian militant who renounced violence in favour of "cultural resistance" is in custody after Israel apparently revoked an amnesty deal, in a move seen by his associates as part of a campaign of harassment against a radical West Bank theatre. Zakaria Zubeidi, a former of leader of the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade in the northern West Bank city of Jenin, is being held by Palestinian security forces after being told he would be arrested by Israeli authorities if he did not hand himself in.

Report: Assad to meet Hamas leadership
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Elior Levy - January 3, 2012 - 1:00am

Syrian President Bashar Assad is expected to meet with Damascus-based representatives of the Palestinian factions in the coming days, including the heads of Hamas, Lebanon's al-Akhbar newspaper reported Tuesday. Assad's relationship with Hamas leadership has been rocky since March 2011, when Syria plunged into civil unrest. The Syrian president expressed his disapproval of Hamas' decision to relocate its politburo to another Arab country. The decision was made following the growing unrest in the country.

Anti corruption chief going after foreign accounts
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
January 3, 2012 - 1:00am

The head of the PA anti-corruption commission said on Monday that the body is working to restore public funds stashed abroad by Palestinian officials. Rafiq al-Natsheh told Ma'an that the commission is chasing corruption suspects living outside of Palestine, pending an agreement with their countries of residence. Jordanian newspaper al-Dustour reported last week that Palestinian officials are moving deposits from Jordanian banks to foreign accounts, raising fears that suspects were trying to circumvent the corruption crackdown.

Hamas: Peaceful resistance not applicable to Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
January 3, 2012 - 1:00am

Hamas leader Mahmoud Zahhar has cast doubt his party will take up peaceful resistance against Israel as advocated by former rivals Fatah. Under a reconciliation deal between the factions signed in May, officials called for a unified "national strategy," and Fatah officials say that Hamas chief-in-exile Khalid Mashaal agreed to adopt non-violent popular action in favor of armed struggle. But in comments to Ma'an late Monday, senior Hamas official in Gaza Zahhar stressed the situation in the Gaza Strip is different to the occupied West Bank.

Settlement outposts at root of Jewish violence in West Bank
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Edmund Sanders - December 29, 2011 - 1:00am

For months many Israelis shrugged off the mosque burnings, the uprooted Palestinian olive trees and even the death threats against Jewish leftists. But when young settlers this month vandalized army bases and stoned Israeli soldiers, the question of Jewish terrorism turned into a national emergency. The recent flare-up in settler violence has puzzled many because it comes when there are no peace talks that might lead to land concessions, Palestinian attacks in the West Bank have dropped to new lows, and Israel is led by a conservative government that is expanding settlement construction.

Gaza Premier in Turkey, in First Official Trip Abroad
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Sebnem Arsu, Ethan Bronner - January 2, 2012 - 1:00am

Ismail Haniya, the Hamas prime minister of Gaza, who is making his first official trip abroad since his Islamist movement took over the Palestinian strip in 2007, sought Monday to strengthen ties with the Arab and Muslim world in the wake of regional uprisings that have produced a rise in Islamist political strength. Here in Turkey, where Mr. Haniya arrived after visiting Egypt and Sudan, he was quoted by the semiofficial Anatolian Agency on Monday as saying that “the Arab Spring is turning into an Islamic spring.”

Jordan: Chief Israeli, Palestinian envoys meet
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Associated Press
by Mohammed Daraghmeh - January 3, 2012 - 1:00am

Jordan says the chief Palestinian and Israeli negotiators are meeting for the first time in more than a year. Jordan's Foreign Ministry says Israel's Yitzhak Molcho and Palestinian Saeb Erekat are meeting in the presence of envoys from the United States, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations. The pair will later hold a separate meeting alone to exchange positions on key issues of security and borders between Israel and a future Palestinian state.

Why US won't be center stage in new Israeli-Palestinian talks
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Howard Lafranchi - January 2, 2012 - 1:00am

The United States won’t take its usual center-stage position when Israeli and Palestinian negotiators meet Tuesday for their first direct talks in more than a year.

Palestinians and Israelis Will Talk This Week
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Ethan Bronner - January 1, 2012 - 1:00am

Palestinian and Israeli negotiators plan to meet for the first time in more than a year in Jordan on Tuesday, in an effort to revive moribund peace talks, although none of the sides involved suggested any reason to view the meeting as a sign of significant progress. The Jordanian Foreign Ministry said the chief Palestinian negotiator, Saeb Erekat, and the chief Israeli negotiator, Yitzhak Molho, would be joined by officials from Jordan as well as the so-called quartet — Russia, the United States, the European Union and the United Nations — and would later hold a separate meeting.

American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017