February 16th

Clash in Palestinian camp in Lebanon kills 2
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Zeina Karam - February 15, 2010 - 1:00am

Islamic militants clashed with Fatah gunmen in a Palestinian refugee camp in southern Lebanon on Monday, killing at least two people, Palestinian security officials said. It was not immediately clear what prompted the shootout in the Ein el-Hilweh camp, where gunfights are common between armed groups jockeying for power. Monday's confrontation involved gunmen from the militant Asbat al-Ansar group, which is on a U.S. terrorism list and which Washington has accused of being linked to al-Qaida.

Most Hamas police applicants only want jobs
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Ben Hubbard - February 16, 2010 - 1:00am

Take this for a measure of Gaza's economic woes: When the territory's Hamas rulers announced plans to hire about 1,000 new policemen, 15,000 applied. Only a few of those reporting for fitness tests one recent afternoon expressed an interest in police work or said they belonged to the Islamic militant group. Most just wanted a job. Plagued by poverty for decades, Gaza's private sector has been all but wiped out by nearly four years of closed borders and last year's devastating Israeli offensive. In the meantime, Hamas has solidified its grip, making it Gaza's second largest employer.

Cheated: PA trade union head details permit fraud
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
February 16, 2010 - 1:00am

Thousands of Palestinians hoping to gain work and higher wages in Israel were duped over the last three years by a gang of Israelis and Palestinians selling forged permits, Secretary-General of the Palestinian Trade Union Shahir Sa’d said Tuesday. The scam was routed Sunday when Israeli police detained dozens of alleged gang members. The undercover investigation was carried out over a number of months under Commander Dorit Ben-Meir, the Israeli news site Ynet reported at the time. According to the report, 23 Israelis and 11 Palestinians were involved in the scam.

Zahhar: Progress on Hamas-Fatah reconciliation imminent
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
February 16, 2010 - 1:00am

A Palestinian reconciliation agreement could be signed within a few days under Egyptian supervision, senior Hamas official Mahmoud Az-Zahhar announced Monday night. Following a celebration of educational institutions in Gaza City, Zahhar told reporters, "It is obvious that Egypt understands ... that the Egyptian reconciliation document needs amendment. I expect the issue to be reconsidered and a signing to be secured."

Palestinians reverse on terror victim
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Politico
by Josh Gerstein - February 15, 2010 - 1:00am

In a highly unusual step likely to come as a significant relief to U.S. officials, the Palestinian Authority has quietly paid an undisclosed amount to settle a lawsuit by the widow of an American killed in Israel in 2002.

Police release photos of 11 wanted for Hamas killing, hint at Israel involvement [Updated]
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Borzou Daragahi - (Blog) February 15, 2010 - 1:00am

Dubai police have released the names and passport photos from the European identity papers of 11 suspects in the killing of a senior Hamas official last month. According to a report Monday on the website of Al Jazeera International, Dubai police also said two Palestinians had been arrested in the Jan. 20 murder of Mahmoud Mabhouh, a senior figure within the militant group Hamas, which governs the Gaza Strip.

Selling a piece of Palestinian Main Street
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Edmund Sanders - (Interview) February 15, 2010 - 1:00am

Is the West Bank ready for Wall Street? That's a question soon to be answered with the launch of the first-of-its-kind Palestinian private equity fund, which managers hope will raise $50 million to invest in businesses in the Palestinian territories. The Palestine Liberation Organization's finances have at times drawn criticism. Late PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat was accused of controlling a $1-billion investment portfolio that, Western intelligence agencies said, was funded in part through money laundering, arms dealing and diversion of international aid.

February 15th

Dr. Fayyad in Herzliya
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al-Quds
by Ziad Abu Zayyad - (Opinion) February 7, 2010 - 1:00am

Prime Minister Salam Fayyad’s speech before the Herzliya Conference was met with mixed reactions among Palestinians. The comments that circulated on the Internet and in blogs were predominantly negative to the extent that one commentator wrote saying that Fayyad is collaborating in the laying down of Israeli security policy.

Yasser Arafat's successor will likely be a Fatah security figure
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Helga Baumgarten - (Opinion) February 15, 2010 - 1:00am

Although it appeared that the leadership transition inside the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), the Palestinian Authority, and the Fatah movement was resolved smoothly with the January 2005 election of Mahmoud Abbas following the death of Yasser Arafat, many Palestinians continue to view Abbas’ election as only an interim solution to Palestinian problems. In the meantime, the struggle for succession inside Fatah has continued behind closed doors and recently has come out into the open due to Abbas’ waning legitimacy and popularity.

Asharq Al-Awsat Talks to Israel Deputy Foreign Minister Daniel Ayalon
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Asharq Alawsat
by Ali al-Saleh - (Interview) February 14, 2010 - 1:00am

Perhaps for security reasons, the meeting with Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister David Ayalon was at the Israeli Embassy in a neighborhood across the affluent High Kensington Street in central London. One feels the security measures even before arriving at the big gate to this exclusive area near Kensington Palace, the private residence of the late Princess Diana. You are watched from a distance by a number of British policemen in their traditional uniform, but the untraditional part of the scene is the machine guns they are carrying.

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