U.S. Says Sea-Bound Aid to Gaza Is Irresponsible
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
June 25, 2010 - 12:00am

Washington — The Obama administration said sea-bound aid to Gaza is “irresponsible.” “Mechanisms exist for the transfer of humanitarian assistance to Gaza by member states and groups that want to do so,” a U.S. State Department release said Wednesday, in response to a reporter’s question about Lebanese plans to ship aid to the Gaza Strip. “Direct delivery by sea is neither appropriate nor responsible, and certainly not effective, under the circumstances.”

Regional order alarms Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Gulf News
by Patrick Seale - (Opinion) June 25, 2010 - 12:00am

With growing insistence, some influential Israelis are beginning to press the Netanyahu government to seek to make peace with Syria — even if the price tag is the return of the entire Golan to Syrian sovereignty. The latest example of this campaign is an interview which Major-General (retired) Uri Saguy, 66, gave on June 11 to the Israeli daily Yediot Aharanot, in which he declared that, "I believe that a political agreement between Syria and Israel is a military national interest of the highest order".

Rights group criticizes Hamas treatment of Israeli
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Associated Press
by Matti Friedman - June 25, 2010 - 12:00am

Human Rights Watch charged Friday that Hamas militants are violating the rules of war by prohibiting a captive Israeli soldier from having contact with his family and the Red Cross. The treatment of the 23-year-old soldier, captured exactly four years ago by Hamas, is "cruel and inhuman" and matches a U.N. definition of torture because he is denied any outside contact, the U.S.-based rights group said in a statement.

Israel offers to let Europe diplomats visit Gaza-official
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
by Ari Rabinovitch - June 25, 2010 - 12:00am

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has invited his Italian counterpart to lead a delegation of European foreign ministers to the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, an Israeli official said on Thursday. Israel has largely refused to let foreign diplomats pass through its checkpoints into Gaza since it tightened its blockade on the territory after Hamas Islamists seized it in 2007.

Israel warplanes target 4 sites across Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
June 25, 2010 - 12:00am

Israeli aircraft bombed four targets in the Gaza Strip before sunrise Friday. No injuries were reported in the attack that came a day after a Palestinian faction launched seven mortar shells into Israeli territory. Two airstrikes in the north and another two in the south caused severe structural damage to buildings in Jabaliya and Beit Hanoun, while two smuggling tunnels were destroyed near Rafah, security officials in Gaza said. F16 jet fighters hit twice in the north, outside residential areas in an industrial zone.

An historic moment for Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jordan Times
by Rami Khouri - June 25, 2010 - 12:00am

The Israeli decision to ease the three-year-old siege of Gaza is being mildly welcomed in many quarters, and deep scepticism in others. The Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, has pleaded with the world via the Quartet to pressure Israel to fully lift its siege, while Lebanese and Iranian groups are planning to send more humanitarian aid ships to Gaza to challenge and break the Israeli blockade.

Israeli President Shimon Peres: U.S. and other powers must engage Hamas on peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by Janine Zacharia - June 25, 2010 - 12:00am

Israel's president and elder statesman, Shimon Peres, urged the United States and other world powers this week to engage with Hamas in order to persuade the Islamist group to renounce violence and prepare for peace with Israel.

Israeli Official Assails Plans for Demolition of Arab Homes
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Dina Kraft - June 25, 2010 - 12:00am

A top Israeli official scolded local officials on Tuesday for giving preliminary approval to a plan calling for the demolition of 22 Palestinian homes, in an echo of past stumbles over Jewish development in East Jerusalem. The official, Defense Minister Ehud Barak, was on a visit to Washington, where tensions have run high over Jewish housing in East Jerusalem. A member of the Labor Party, the only centrist element in a right-leaning government, Mr. Barak seemed annoyed by the move, which threatened to upset the indirect, American-brokered peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.

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