Focus on the far horizon of settlements
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Rami Khouri - September 29, 2010 - 12:00am

The problem with the immediate controversy over whether or not Israel will continue to suspend most expansion of its Jewish settlements in occupied Arab land is that it is both tangential and central to the Arab-Israeli conflict. This means that the principal actors – especially Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas – have much flexibility to hold their ground or make concessions, because in either case they can claim to be winners.

“Pleasant Surprise” From Netanyahu
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Dar Al-Hayat
by Elias Harfoush - (Opinion) September 28, 2010 - 12:00am

When Benjamin Netanyahu refused to extend the settlement freeze in the West Bank, he was not doing anything surprising. Indeed, he was not expected to respond to the calls of the sponsor of the direct negotiations, President Barack Obama, or to the positions of the European Union which urged Israel to provide the necessary climate for the success of the negotiations.

Negotiating Until the End
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Asharq Alawsat
by Ali Ibrahim - (Opinion) September 29, 2010 - 12:00am

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is in a difficult position. The Palestinian negotiators linked the continuation of direction negotiations with Israel – which were launched with great difficulty and are still at an early stage – with an extension to the partial freeze on settlement construction; something that has not materialized from the Israeli side, despite international pressure, in particular from Washington, who are sponsoring the current negotiations.

Ministers: Lieberman causing Israel damage
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
September 29, 2010 - 12:00am

Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman's speech before the UN, which was in stark contradiction with the official position of Israel's government, has set Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak on edge, prompting them to shake all connection with his statements. They were not the only ones. Minister Isaac Herzog went so far as to say that the peace process may even alter the coalition's makeup, adding that he hopes "this happens as soon as possible."

Confessions of an Israeli anti-settler bigot
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Bradley Burston - (Blog) September 29, 2010 - 12:00am

I needed to hear it. Even though I knew that when I did, I'd be livid. The freeze still had eight hours to run, but in a small settlement outside the shinbone-in-the-throat settler city of Ariel, it was time to humiliate the president of the United States. I needed to hear it. I turned up the car radio. A drainage ditch of a voice. "From this stage I turn to Hussein Obama and tell him, 'The Land of Israel belongs to the people of Israel.'"

Lieberman is making a liar out of Netanyahu
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Aluf Benn - (Opinion) September 29, 2010 - 12:00am

Israel showed the international community on Tuesday that the country is ruled by a circus, not a responsible government with a policy. Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman told the representatives of the world's nations from the UN podium that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is spreading illusions and silly talk about peace. There is no chance for a permanent settlement for a generation, Lieberman said, and it is necessary to "exchange" populated areas and adjust the state to its correct size.

Israel flotilla raid could go to int'l court-lawyer
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
September 28, 2010 - 12:00am

Israel's raid on an aid flotilla bound for Gaza could end up as a case before the International Criminal Court (ICC), a lawyer who investigated the May raid for the United Nations Human Rights Council said on Tuesday. The mission investigating the raid was not asked to make any recommendations and did not do so. But the suggestion that the case could end up at the ICC -- to which Israel is not a signatory -- maintains pressure on Israel over the incident.

Israel minister's UN speech disowned by Netanyahu
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
by Patrick Worsnip - September 28, 2010 - 12:00am

Israel's foreign minister said on Tuesday a peace deal with the Palestinians could take decades and pressed his own plan which seeks to get rid of as many Israeli Arab citizens as possible in a land swap. In a speech to the U.N. General Assembly in New York that was quickly disowned by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Avigdor Lieberman again exposed the serious differences between Netanyahu and him over peace prospects.

Netanyahu says Mideast peace talks must go on
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
by Joseph Nasr - September 28, 2010 - 12:00am

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday agreed to meet Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas at a summit in Paris next month, a joint effort to overcome the threat of their peace talks collapsing. A statement from Netanyahu's office said the prime minister had held phone conversations with French President Nicolas Sarkozy and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and told them he hoped "positive negotiations" with Abbas would continue.

Medics: Israeli tanks shell Gaza overnight
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
September 29, 2010 - 12:00am

Israeli artillery shelling was reported overnight Tuesday in two Gaza districts near the border area, medics told Ma'an. Gaza medical services spokesman Adham Abu Silmiyya said tanks stationed along the northern border close to the Karni crossing opened fire toward homes, reporting no injuries. Abu Silmiyya also said tanks opened fire at homes east of the Al-Bureij refugee camp in the Joher Ad-Dik neighborhood, again reporting no injuries. An Israeli military spokeswoman said the Israeli army was not familiar with either incident.

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