So what if Obama wants to move peace process forward?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Akiva Eldar - (Opinion) September 23, 2009 - 12:00am

When Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sat opposite U.S. President Barack Obama Tuesday, perhaps he was overcome by the sullen recollection from the days when he served as deputy foreign minister under David Levy. Even then, 17 years ago, there was an American president who entertained the idea of resolving the Israeli-Arab conflict and thought that this concept was incompatible with the expansion of settlements.

Source: Obama strongly expressed his impatience to Netanyahu and Abbas
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Natasha Mozgovaya - September 23, 2009 - 12:00am

President Barack Obama told Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas Tuesday that he was dissatisfied with their recent foot-dragging on getting Israeli-Palestinian talks restarted. A senior U.S. administration source Tuesday told Haaretz that "during the tripartite meeting Obama strongly expressed his impatience." The source said the meeting was "businesslike" but not cordial. Netanyahu and Abbas voiced their opinions but did not attack.

Peace talks begin with little Palestinian or Israeli support
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
September 23, 2009 - 12:00am

An inglorious beginning to peace talks was kicked off with what some described as a “civil” meeting between President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday. The two leaders reportedly stated their previous positions of stalemate, while the US diplomatic machine put its gears into drive and arranged for US special envoy George Mitchell to return to the region after he failed to convince sides to sit down in New York. Teams of Israeli and Palestinian negotiators will also travel to Washington for a resumption of efforts.

Obama is doubling down, not backing down, on Middle East peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ibishblog
by Hussein Ibish - (Blog) September 23, 2009 - 12:00am

Most reactions to the tripartite meeting at the UN yesterday between Pres. Obama and Prime Minister Netanyahu and Pres. Abbas were negative, and this is entirely understandable since no one had anything particularly new to say. Reaction in the Arab world was particularly agitated, with many commentators arguing that Obama has "capitulated" to Israel's position on settlements, and some even throwing up their hands entirely about any possibility of progress under this president.

Palestinian PM cites support for statehood plan
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Karin Laub - September 22, 2009 - 12:00am

Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad said in an interview Tuesday that he has won broad international support for his plan to ready the Palestinians for statehood within two years. However, Fayyad sidestepped the question of whether the Palestinians would unilaterally declare statehood at the end of that period if a peace deal with Israel is not in place. He said that decision would have to made by the Palestine Liberation Organization and others when the time comes.

A Mideastern farewell photo at the UN?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Zahi Khouri - (Opinion) September 23, 2009 - 12:00am

No concrete results were expected from Tuesday’s meeting at the United Nations that brought together US President Barack Obama, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. The gathering marked the end of the first phase of Obama’s intriguing foray into Arab-Israeli peace-making.

Obama hosts Middle East peace talks
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Sharmila Devi - September 23, 2009 - 12:00am

The US president Barack Obama yesterday acknowledged the long road to Middle East peace after he directly entered the diplomatic process and brought the current Israeli and Palestinian leaders together for the first time. As expected, there was no breakthrough, but Mr Obama reiterated his commitment to resuming peace talks and announced that Israeli and Palestinian negotiators would meet George Mitchell, US Middle East envoy, next week.

Failure to advance Middle East peace a setback for Obama
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Howard Lafranchi - September 22, 2009 - 12:00am

Unbowed by the failure to reach an accord to restart Mideast peace talks, President Obama told Israeli and Palestinian leaders he met Tuesday that he would keep up his administration's diplomatic efforts until negotiations are relaunched. He then directed top foreign policy aides, including Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and special Mideast envoy George Mitchell, to continue the intense contacts with Israeli and Palestinian officials the US has pursued since Obama took office.

Obama may have lost some face in the Middle East, but don't write him off yet
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Guardian
by Jonathan Freedland - (Opinion) September 23, 2009 - 12:00am

There was something wrong with that picture. Of course all the best politicians are skilled actors, so they did their best to hide the reality. But, despite the smiles and the handshake, Barack Obama, Mahmoud Abbas and Binyamin Netanyahu could not quite conceal the weirdness at the centre of their photo-op in New York today. What the image should have conveyed was the gratitude of the leaders of two minor states, happy to be basking in the sunlight radiated by the global emperor.

President Obama enters the Mideast fray
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Paul Richter - September 23, 2009 - 12:00am

President Obama, exasperated by the disappointing course of Mideast peace efforts, urged Israelis and Palestinians on Tuesday to reapply themselves, even though eight months of intensive American engagement has failed to return the parties to the negotiating table. Obama met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas at a New York hotel ahead of a United Nations session, stepping personally into the process and offering an unusually blunt message.

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