PLO will not withdraw recognition of Israel: official
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
December 18, 2010 - 1:00am

A senior Palestinian official on Saturday rejected reports that the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) was studying withdrawing its recognition of Israel in response to the resumption of settlement building. "The choices of the Palestinian leadership are known and clear, " said Yasser Abed Rabbo, a member of PLO's Executive Committee, " they do not include anything about the recognition of Israel."

Arab nations prepare to present draft resolution to UN General Assembly
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
December 19, 2010 - 1:00am

The Arab states plan to present a draft resolution to the United Nations Security Council against the Jewish settlements and they will turn to the UN General Assembly if the United States vetoes the draft, a Palestinian official said. Nabil Shaath, a Palestinian negotiator, said that the UN General Assembly is similar to the UN Security Council in its ability to call for sanctions on the state that does not implement its resolutions.

Mubarak blames Israel for Mideast peace crisis
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Statesman
by Maamoun Youssef - December 19, 2010 - 1:00am

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak on Sunday blamed Israel for the stalemate in peace negotiations with the Palestinians in a speech before a joint session of the Egyptian parliament's two chambers. Mubarak also warned Israel that the security of its people hinged on peace rather than "occupation or arms."

Slain American tourist had deep ties to Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Statesman
by Amy Teibel - December 20, 2010 - 1:00am

An American tourist killed in a forest outside Jerusalem had deep spiritual ties to Israel through her involvement with an evangelical ministry that promotes Christianity among Jews. Kristine Luken, who was in her mid-40s, was stabbed to death Saturday while hiking with a friend. Israeli police had originally identified her as Christine Logan. Luken was involved with the "Church's Ministry among Jewish people," first in the U.S., then in England, where she became a ministry staffer. The church is active in Israel.

UPDATE 1-Israeli air strike kills five Gaza militants
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Alertnet
December 18, 2010 - 1:00am

An Israeli air strike killed five Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip on Saturday, Israeli and Palestinian officials said. The Israeli military said in a statement that its aircraft "targeted and identified hitting a squad of terror operatives who were preparing to launch rockets towards Israeli territory". Palestinian hospital officials said the five were militants. The Hamas Islamist group, which rules the Gaza Strip, says it has tried to curb rocket fire at Israel, but smaller groups continue to carry the out such attacks.

HRW: Israeli settlements 'displace' Palestinians
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
December 20, 2010 - 1:00am

Palestinians in the occupied West Bank lack basic amenities and are effectively being forcibly displaced by discriminatory Israeli policies, Human Rights Watch said in a report released Sunday. The New York-based rights group called on the United States to penalize Israel by withholding from its massive annual aid a sum equal to the amount the state gives in subsidies to West Bank settlements.

Israel orders evacuation of Nablus village
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
December 20, 2010 - 1:00am

Israeli forces have ordered residents of Khirbet Tana, a tiny Palestinian village to the east of Nablus in the northern West Bank, to evacuate their homes and depart the village within the next 24 hours. Israeli forces threatened to confiscate property, including sheep, once the deadline passed. Ghassan Daghlas, a Palestinian Authority officer following settlement activities in the northern West Bank, told Ma’an that Israeli authorities informed residents that their properties would be confiscated if they stayed after warning.

Disillusioned Palestinians seeking new path
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
by Philippe Agret - December 19, 2010 - 1:00am

Disillusioned by the collapse of talks and disappointed by the US administration, the PLO is turning away from negotiations and seeking international recognition for a Palestinian state. In the days since the US administration acknowledged it had failed to chart a path back to direct peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians, senior Palestinian officials have made clear that they think negotiations are dead. "The peace process is in a deep coma," PLO negotiator Nabil Sha'ath told journalists Saturday night. "I don't think anyone wants to continue this negotiation."

In Israel, a rabbi who argues that anti-Arab measures are un-Jewish
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Ben Lynfield - December 17, 2010 - 1:00am

At first glance, Arik Ascherman seems more like a soft-spoken university lecturer than a combative crusader for the rights of the “other,” be they Palestinian or African refugee. Yet the American-born rabbi is embroiled in two of Israel’s main conflicts today: the struggle with Palestinians over the West Bank and, within Israel, a rising tide of anti-Arab and anti-foreigner sentiment. The latter is starkly illustrated by an unprecedented rabbinical edict calling on Jews not to rent or sell property to non-Jews.

Palestinian Leader Has 60 Israelis to Lunch
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Isabel Kershner - December 19, 2010 - 1:00am

RAMALLAH, West Bank — The Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, hosted a two-hour meeting with about 60 Israeli politicians, public figures and activists at his headquarters here on Sunday in an effort to reach out to the Israeli public at a time when the official peace process is at a standstill. Enlarge This Image Rina Castelnuovo for The New York Times President Mahmoud Abbas. “In the end, we want to make peace between the people, the Israeli and Palestinian people,” Mr. Abbas said, not just the governments.

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