October 27th

Abbas Says Might Not Run In Poll
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
October 27, 2009 - 12:00am

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas told U.S. President Barack Obama he would not run for re-election unless Israel dropped its refusal to freeze settlements, Palestinian officials said on Tuesday. "Abu Mazen (Abbas) told him that he would not be a candidate in the presidential election (in January) unless Israel abided by the peace requirement," said one of the officials, who are briefed regularly by Abbas and spoke on condition of anonymity.

October 26th

Editorial: Palestinian feud
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Arab News
(Editorial) October 26, 2009 - 12:00am

The announcement by Palestine President Mahmoud Abbas to hold elections on Jan. 24 could make Hamas sign a deal with Fatah for Palestinian unity, although Hamas describes this as pressure. It could widen the factional divide further. Seeing he has no real opposition rival, it could give Abbas more years in power. And it might lead Hamas to hold its own ballot in the Gaza Strip, a move that could create two rival presidents, two parliaments and two prime ministers in two separate Palestinian territories.

Palestinian reconciliation through ballots
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Khaled Diab - (Opinion) October 26, 2009 - 12:00am

Cursed as they are with bad leadership, the sad saga of the Palestinian people fluctuates between tragedy and farce. As if contending with a crushing occupation, embargoes, closures and the complete physical separation of the West Bank and Gaza were not enough, over the past couple of years, they have also seen the two parties supposedly representing them descend into petty and bloody factionalism.

Israel Ever-Present at US-Iranian Negotiations
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Dar Al-Hayat
by Raghida Dergham - (Opinion) October 26, 2009 - 12:00am

The strategy of the two parallel tracks, based on incentives and threats, which has been adopted by the Barack Obama Administration is raising debate and discussion, as well as finding those who would challenge it, those who believe in its roots, those who fear for it and those who are wary of it falling like a gift onto the lap of the seasoned experts of procrastination, obstruction and maneuvers.

Biting Fingers
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Dar Al-Hayat
by Abdullah Iskandar - (Opinion) October 26, 2009 - 12:00am

It is as if President Mahmoud Abbas was telling the Hamas movement: “Alright, you took over the Gaza Strip by force of arms and ruled it. You expelled the Fatah movement and all the figures of the Palestinian Authority from it by force of arms. You never committed to any of the previous agreements of appeasement. You declare your fierce opposition to the Oslo Accords and what they have resulted in. Yet you hold truces with Israel when it wages military operations against Gaza. You hold against the PA its relations with the United States.

Palestinian elections may pose risk to unity
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Omar Karmi - October 26, 2009 - 12:00am

It was widely expected, but the presidential decree issued on Friday calling for presidential and parliamentary elections will nevertheless put into sharp focus Palestinian divisions and represents something of a gamble. Mahmoud Abbas, the head of the Palestine Liberation Organisation, president of the Palestinian Authority and leader of Fatah, probably did not have much of a choice. Unity negotiations with Hamas are long-stalled and Egyptian efforts to reconcile Hamas and Fatah with a compromise agreement also seem to have failed.

Jordan’s ties with Israel turn cold
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Suha Philip Ma’ayeh - October 26, 2009 - 12:00am

Jordan and Israel mark 15 years of peace today, but ties between both countries are cooler than ever. Since the right-wing Israeli government of Benjamin Netenyahu took office in May, Jordan has been left further disappointed with its neighbour.

'Iran is our friend,' says Turkish PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Guardian
by Robert Tait - October 26, 2009 - 12:00am

With its stunning vistas and former Ottoman palaces, the banks of the Bosphorus – the strategic waterway that cuts Istanbul in half and divides Europe from Asia – may be the perfect place to distinguish friend from foe and establish where your country's interests lie. And sitting in his grandiose headquarters beside the strait, long the symbol of Turkey's supposed role as bridge between east and west, Recep Tayyip Erdogan had little doubt about who was a friend and who wasn't.

Prof. Weiss at rightist event: Build third temple immediately
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Efrat Weiss - October 26, 2009 - 12:00am

In a move that may heighten tensions in the capital, the Organization for Human Rights on the Temple Mount (OHRTM) called for Jews to visit the east Jerusalem compound, which houses the al-Aqsa Mosque. During a rightist event held in Jerusalem Sunday evening, just hours after Muslims rioted in and around the Temple Mount amid reports that Jewish extremists were planning to visit the site, Professor Hillel Weiss said, "The (third) temple must be built now. The mosques do not have to be destroyed in order for us to do this."

As occupier, Israel must face up to Goldstone report
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Zvi Barel - (Opinion) October 26, 2009 - 12:00am

Goldstone was born in June 1967. I am not referring to the judge from South Africa, but to his report, or more precisely, the notion that Israel needs a synonym for the soul-searching it must carry out after 42 years of occupation. In the 575 pages of the report that is loaded with details, names, numbers, a list of weapons, interrogation methods and articles of international law, three paragraphs hide among the conclusions on pages 521 and 522, numbered 1674 to 1676. Here lies the explanation for the tragic results of Operation Cast Lead.

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