Israel frees Palestinian prisoners
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Myra Noveck, Tom Rachman - August 24, 2008 - 8:00pm

Israel released almost 200 Palestinian prisoners Monday in a good-will gesture aimed at reinvigorating the faltering peace process. Hours later, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrived in the country to make her own push for a deal between the two sides. With President Bush leaving office in January, his administration has been seeking a peace agreement before the end of the year, but the efforts have brought little progress so far. Ms. Rice arrived Monday for two days of talks with top Israeli and Palestinian officials, her seventh trip to the region since November.

Hamas' Deif: We'll continue to attack Zionist enemies of God
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Avi Issacharoff - November 3, 2008 - 8:00pm

Mohammed Deif, the former head of Hamas' military wing, on Tuesday declared that the Palestinian military group will continue to launch terror attacks against Israel. Speaking at a memorial ceremony for Hamas leader Fawzi Abu Al-Kara, Deif said his men will continue Jihad "until victory and martyrdom." "We will pursue the Zionist enemies of God," the former Iz al-Din al-Qassam commander vowed.

Maintenance mode
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bitterlemons
by Yossi Alpher - November 2, 2008 - 8:00pm

Israel finds itself in a unique position in terms of both its political history and the annals of the Israel-Arab peace process. PM Ehud Olmert has resigned and elections have been set for February 10, 2009. The elections have caught Israel in the throes of two peace processes, with the PLO and Syria. Olmert, who is not running for reelection, has indicated that he intends to pursue negotiations on both fronts.

Advance the dialogue regardless of transition
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bitterlemons
by Gilead Sher - November 2, 2008 - 8:00pm

Global challenges of economy and security become an ever-growing concern in transition periods such as the present one. In that context, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and other geopolitical developments in the Middle East represent a myriad of problems of leadership, legitimacy, continuity and practicability. The concurrent transition among the terms in office of the relevant actors in the arena--the United States, Israel and the Palestinian Authority--should be meticulously prepared for.

A direct and immediate impact
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bitterlemons
by Ghassan Khatib - November 2, 2008 - 8:00pm

The domestic Israeli political scene and balance of powers have a very strong effect on the peace process and the domestic Palestinian scene. The Israeli balance of power is in turn deeply influenced by Israeli public opinion. The latter sets the limits for how far negotiators can go as well as for how far Israeli bulldozers may reach.

Hamas colleagues barred from crossing Gaza border
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Gulf News
November 2, 2008 - 8:00pm

A senior Palestinian parliamentarian said that he and five colleagues from the Hamas movement had been barred by Egypt from crossing its border with Gaza on their way to visit other Arab countries. Acting parliament speaker Ahmad Bahar said in a statement on Sunday that "the Egyptians have rejected a request" for the six lawmakers to travel through Egypt. The statement did not give the lawmakers' destination or the purpose of their trip.

Meshaal’s mission was an exercise in public relations
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
(Editorial) November 3, 2008 - 8:00pm

Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal made a full set of rounds in Beirut on Monday, pressing the proverbial flesh and telling this country's leadership much of what it wanted to hear. Unfortunately, he also engaged in a little wishful thinking and/or expected his interlocutors to do the same. Given Meshaal's reputation for diplomatic and political savvy, it was disappointing to hear him engage in a brand of public relations with which the Arab world is all too familiar.

Egypt uncovers 13 Gaza smuggling tunnels
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Agence France Presse (AFP)
November 2, 2008 - 8:00pm

Egyptian security forces have uncovered 13 tunnels used by smugglers to slip contraband into the Gaza Strip, a security official said on Monday. Three of the tunnels collapsed after heavy rain along Egypt's border with the Palestinian territory, the official said, adding that the remaining tunnels would also be destroyed. There were no reports of casualties after the tunnels collapsed. At least 40 Egyptian and Palestinian smugglers have died in tunnel accidents and demolitions by Egyptian security forces this year.

Palestinian unity talks at crossroads - diplomat
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
November 3, 2008 - 8:00pm

Efforts by the Arab world to reconcile the Palestinian Fateh and Hamas factions could be put back for years if unity talks in Cairo next week end without agreement, a diplomat involved in the process said on Monday. The Islamist group Hamas has threatened to boycott the November 10 negotiations unless Fateh halts its “arrests and repression” of Hamas activists in the West Bank and releases some 400 Hamas prisoners it says are held in West Bank jails.

Farming Palestine
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from New Statesman
by Ben White - October 30, 2008 - 8:00pm

n what is becoming somewhat of an annual tradition, recent weeks have seen dozens of stories in the international media about the difficulties facing Palestinians during the olive harvest season. Ever since the start of the Second Intifada in 2000, the West Bank olive harvest has been extensively covered by the press, with reporters accompanying Palestinian farmers and villagers out to the groves.

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