August 28th

Palestinians say full settlement freeze is precondition to new peace talks
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Ashraf Khalil - August 27, 2009 - 12:00am

A senior Palestinian peace negotiator says the terms of a proposed Israeli deal to restart the peace process, leaked to the press this week, are unacceptable. But he did not rule out a meeting at the United Nations next month between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. In Germany today, Mr. Netanyahu said that no new agreement to stop settlement building has been reached.

State Dept.: Policy against new Israeli settlements stands
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from CNN
by Charles Keyes - August 27, 2009 - 12:00am

The State Department is sticking with a strict no-new-settlements policy toward Israel, its spokesman said Thursday, but he held out the possibility that Israelis and Palestinians might eventually take a different path. "The position that the secretary has stated remains our position," spokesman P.J. Crowley said at his daily briefing. "And we continue to discuss with Israel and with the other parties what they have to do on the settlement issue."

In Village, Palestinians See Model for Their Cause
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Ethan Bronner - August 27, 2009 - 12:00am

Every Friday for the past four and a half years, several hundred demonstrators — Palestinian villagers, foreign volunteers and Israeli activists — have walked in unison to the Israeli barrier separating this tiny village from the burgeoning settlement of Modiin Illit, part of which is built on the village’s land. One hundred feet away, Israeli soldiers watch and wait. The protesters chant and shout and, inevitably, a few throw stones. Then just as inevitably, the soldiers open fire with tear gas and water jets, lately including a putrid oil-based liquid that makes the entire area stink.

August 27th

Washington Watch: Is Obama Bush league?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Douglas Bloomfield - (Opinion) August 26, 2009 - 12:00am

President Barack Obama is expected to reveal his Middle East strategy next month, very likely in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly. In many ways it may resemble his predecessor's 2002 vision for Arab-Israeli peace, but the question everyone will be asking is whether this time the American president is really serious.

Merkel warns Iran on sanctions
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from BBC News
August 27, 2009 - 12:00am

Angela Merkel was speaking after talks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Berlin. She also called on Israel to freeze its settlement construction for the sake of progress in peace talks. In London on Wednesday, Mr Netanyahu suggested Israel was close to an agreement on settlements. During his visit to Germany, the Israeli prime minister has also been given original blueprints of the Nazi death camp at Auschwitz.

Palestinians pay the price for Israel's illegal settlements
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Independent
by Katherine Butler - August 27, 2009 - 12:00am

On a still, hot, August afternoon you can only hear the bleating of the lambs and the occasional bark of a dog. There are few places more exposed and isolated in the West Bank than the cluster of tents and caves that is home to Khalil Nawaja, his wife Tamam, their two sons and their 50 sheep.

Trade revives as Palestinian cities reconnect
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
August 27, 2009 - 12:00am

Businesses in normal countries take getting around for granted. They can distribute, export and attract workers and customers from wide areas. In the Israeli-occupied West Bank, access to more than half of the land is restricted. Israel has ultimate control of roads, energy, water, telecommunications and air space. The violent Palestinian intifada (uprising) of 2000 triggered an Israeli security crackdown, creating checkpoints on key routes, closing roads and putting 600 obstacles around Israel's West Bank settlements.

On the ground in Gaza, hopes for peace still flicker
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Antony Loewenstein - August 26, 2009 - 12:00am

Kamal Awaja lost his son in the recent Gaza war. He claims that Israeli soldiers murdered his child in front of his eyes before shooting his wife and himself in the leg, chest and arm. Today he lives with his large family in a tent in Beit Lahiya in northern Gaza, trying to provide a sense of normality for his children by tending a vegetable patch and constructing a small, plastic swimming pool.

Fayyad’s brilliant two-year plan for Palestinian Statehood
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jordan Times
by Daoud Kuttab - (Opinion) August 27, 2009 - 12:00am

There are so many ways in which the plan by Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad for the de facto creation of a Palestinian state can be seen as a brilliant idea that is hard to ignore or oppose it. Fayyad’s blueprint includes plans to end the Palestinian economy’s dependence on Israel, unify the legal system and downsize the government. The idea, submitted by him after weeks of meetings with his ministers and staff, also involves building infrastructure, harnessing natural energy sources and water, and improving housing, education and agriculture.

De-facto deliberations
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Alan Baker - (Opinion) August 27, 2009 - 12:00am

The new aims and proposals enunciated by Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salaam Fayad regarding the establishment of a de facto Palestinian state within two years, with or without Israeli cooperation, would appear at first sight to be interesting. To a certain extent it could even be refreshing, offering a more pragmatic and viable forecast for the political and economic development of the Palestinians than any previous visions - which were based mostly on threats and unrealistic, belligerent rhetoric.

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