Israeli-Palestinian peace talks look less likely as settlers fret over freeze
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Christa Case Bryant - August 13, 2010 - 12:00am

Israeli and Palestinian leaders are coming under growing US pressure to enter direct peace talks. But despite international mediation this week, they have been unable to close the gap between what their respective constituents will accept. A key sticking point is the 10-month freeze on Israeli settlements in the West Bank, set to expire next month.

For Israel, There’s Only One End Game
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
by Leonard Fein - August 11, 2010 - 12:00am

The “two state solution” to the Israel/Palestine conflict has become the glamourless default position of most of those who think about the conflict. It has achieved that lumpy status despite the flaws in its logic, the problematics of its implementation, the dangers that inhere in it and the determined hostility to it from some on both sides of the conflict. Still, it’s been the only end game in town for quite some time, and it has had as its foundation stone the belief that only with two viable states can Israel preserve itself as both Jewish and democratic.

PA: State-building continues despite occupation
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
August 13, 2010 - 12:00am

"Despite the occupation, the Palestinian people have made strong progress in building sound institutions within a stable society, on the way to statehood," the Palestinian Authority declared Thursday. The report, spanning May 2009-May 2010, cataloged what the PA called successes for the year, citing the construction of 34 new schools and expansion of 23 - 11 new clinics, 44 new housing projects, 16 new roads, and 370,000 newly planted trees among other achievements.

ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jordan Times
by George S. Hishmeh - August 13, 2010 - 12:00am

Oftentimes, Israelis and their supporters bury their heads in the sand, ignoring all that goes on around them. For example, take the case of a university professor who joyously lauded an “opinion poll” claiming that 71 per cent of Arab respondents have “no interest” in the Palestinian-Israeli “peace process”. Efraim Karsh, who teaches at King’s College, London and is author of “Palestine Betrayed”, cited the poll in a commentary, titled “The Palestinians, Alone” in a leading American newspaper, The New York Times, which in turn was remiss in not checking it.

Palestinian, Israeli economy ministers meet
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
August 13, 2010 - 12:00am

Palestinian Authority Minister of National Economy Hasan Abu Libdeh held a meeting Thursday with his Israeli counterpart, Benjamin Ben Eliezer, the Palestinian ministry said. The meeting, called by the Israeli trade and industry minister, was to discuss the PA's campaign to ban settlement produce in the West Bank. “The request for this meeting only indicates the success of the campaign and its impact on the decline in economic strength of the settlements,” Abu Libdeh said.

Why doesn't Abbas want peace talks?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by Jackson Diehl - August 13, 2010 - 12:00am

Give Mahmoud Abbas credit, at least, for consistency. Eighteen months ago, when the then-new Obama administration tried to jump start Middle East peace negotiations, the Palestinian president balked. He said he would not agree even to meet the newly-elected Israeli Prime Minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, unless Netanyahu made several big concessions in advance -- including recognition of a Palestinian state on the basis of Israel's 1967 borders and a freeze on all Jewish settlement construction in the West Bank.

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