August 26th

Palestinians: Abbas open to meeting with Netanyahu
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Ali Waked - August 26, 2009 - 12:00am

Palestinian officials say President Mahmoud Abbas is open to a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the United Nations next month. The meeting would be the first between the two leaders since Netanyahu took office in March. Earlier, Israeli Ambassador to the UN Gabriela Shalev said "there is a possibility" that a three-way meeting may be held between Abbas, Netanyahu and US President Barack Obama in September.

U.S. mulls Peres plan for Palestinian state with interim borders
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Akiva Eldar - August 26, 2009 - 12:00am

The American administration is said to be studying President Shimon Peres' plan for the establishment in the near future of a Palestinian state with temporary borders, with guarantees and a timetable for a permanent agreement that will include solutions on all core issues. Peres presented the plan to U.S. envoy George Mitchell as well as senior Palestinian officials and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. He also discussed it with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and with opposition leader MK Tzipi Livni.

One-state solution is a blueprint for a nightmare
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Carlo Strenger - August 26, 2009 - 12:00am

The continued failure of the Mideast peace process and the escalation of violence from the second intifada to the Gaza war have led many to think that the two-state solution is pedestrian, unimaginative and inhuman. Many Palestinians and a small but vocal group of Jews back Edward Said's claim that a one-state solution with full right of return for all Palestinians must be endorsed. This, they say, would finally lead to absolute and full justice.

Netanyahu, Mitchell fail to reach deal on settlements
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Barak Ravid - August 26, 2009 - 12:00am

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. Middle East envoy George Mitchell failed to reach an agreement on the issue of West Bank settlements during a meeting Wednesday in London, according to spokespeople for the two men. However, Netanyahu and Mitchell did make progress in their meeting, the spokespeople said in a joint message afterward, adding that the two agreed on the need to begin meaningful diplomatic negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians with the aim of reaching a regional peace agreement.

US said to be weighing "temporary" Palestinian borders formula
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
August 26, 2009 - 12:00am

Bethlehem – Ma’an – US President Barack Obama’s administration is considering an Israeli proposal for the creation of a Palestinian state with “temporary borders” an Israeli newspaper said on Tuesday. The plan also includes guarantees and a timetable for a final peace agreement that includes permanent borders and addresses other core issues including the fate of Jerusalem. The Haaretz report did not indicate what the “temporary borders” of the state would be. Palestinian officials have not commented on the report.

Abbas vows to reform PLO
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
August 26, 2009 - 12:00am

Ramallah – Ma’an – Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas pledged to reform the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), and expressed solidarity with Lebanon and Syria on Wednesday at an emergency session of the Palestinian National Council (PNC) in Ramallah. Abbas called for the PNC meeting in order to appoint new members to fill vacant positions on the PLO’s high-ranking Executive Committee.

Why Israel will thwart Obama on settlements
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Walter Rodgers - August 25, 2009 - 12:00am

The idea that the Obama administration can advance the Middle East peace process by having Israel freeze its construction of Jewish settlements in the West Bank stretches credulity. Does any serious observer of the region believe that Israel's appetite for land – owned and occupied for generations by Palestinians – is going to abate? The Israeli land grab has continued for four decades, in defiance of international law and most US presidents. US Middle East envoy George Mitchell has been trying to secure a halt, but his efforts follow a well-worn path that typically ends in charade.

Palestinian Leader Maps Plan for Separate State
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Isabel Kershner - August 25, 2009 - 12:00am

JERUSALEM — The Palestinian prime minister, Salam Fayyad, unveiled a government program on Tuesday to build the apparatus of a Palestinian state within two years, regardless of progress in the stalled peace negotiations with Israel. The plan, the first of its kind from the Palestinian Authority, sets out national goals and priorities and operational instructions for ministries and official bodies. Mr. Fayyad said it was meant to hasten the end of the Israeli occupation and pave the way to independent statehood, which he said “can and must happen within the next two years.”

August 25th

An unusual sighting in Ramallah
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Daoud Kuttab - August 24, 2009 - 12:00am

I had to rub my eyes a few times to be sure that what I was seeing was real. The setting: downtown Ramallah. The event: International Youth Day. The participants were wearing white T-shirts with logos on the front and back and dark red hats. Palestinians from all over the West Bank were participating in the event organized by a network of youth NGOs called "We are Palestine." The theme this year was "We will be as much as we can dream."

Israel speaks with one voice; Arabs must do the same
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Mustapha Karkouti - (Opinion) August 25, 2009 - 12:00am

There is a peacemaker in the White House and now we know what Israel is doing about it. Since his first and only meeting with the US president in May, the Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been trying to derail Mr Obama’s efforts even before he announces his long-awaited peace plan for the Middle East. Mr Netanyahu has failed so far but there is no guarantee that he will not succeed in the future.

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