October 25th

'Israel no longer interested in two-state solution'
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
(Analysis) October 24, 2011 - 12:00am

King Abdulla II of Jordan said on Monday that the prolonged stalemate on the Israeli-Palestinian peace process has made him into a pessimist. Speaking to CNN on the sidelines of a World Economic Forum meeting on the shores of the Dead Sea, King Abdulla said the seemingly unbridgeable gaps between Israel and the Palestinian Authority warrant serious doubts over whether Israel is serious about the peace talks. "I am one of the most optimistic people you'll meet in the Middle East, and for the first time I am very pessimistic about the Israelis and Palestinians moving forward," he said.

PA to demand Barghouti release as part of renewed negotiations with Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Avi Issacharoff - (Analysis) October 25, 2011 - 12:00am

The Palestinian Authority is set to demand that the Quartet pressure Israel to release prisoners in fulfillment of a pledge made by former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to PA President Mahmoud Abbas, senior Palestinian sources told Haaretz on Monday. Among the prisoners The PA wants released are Marwan Barghouti and Ahmad Saadat. The former is a member of the Fatah leadership, while Saadat is Secretary General of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP).

Israel, Egypt agree to prisoner swap
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Alertnet
by Allyn Fisher-Ilan - (Analysis) October 24, 2011 - 12:00am

Israel and Egypt said on Monday they have struck a deal to swap 25 Egyptians in Israeli custody for a U.S.-Israeli dual national accused by Cairo of espionage, in a step seen as easing strains between the strategic neighbours. The U.S.-brokered deal was reached shortly after a successful Egyptian-brokered swap between Israel and Hamas Islamists that freed captive soldier Gilad Shalit in exchange for more than 1,000 Palestinian prisoners.

PA: Israeli inaction encourages settler violence
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
(Analysis) October 25, 2011 - 12:00am

The Palestinian Authority on Monday said the Israeli government was "implicitly encouraging settlers to continue on their rampage" by failing to hold them to account for violent crimes. "Israeli violations against Palestinians and their property and livelihood continue to increase with little or no action by the Israeli authorities to hold people to account under the rule of law," a government statement said.

Erekat: Quartet must say which side harms peace process
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
(Analysis) October 25, 2011 - 12:00am

PLO official Saeb Erekat said on Monday that Israel is impeding the peace process and the Middle East Quartet should publicly recognize Israeli intransigence. The former chief negotiator said on Voice of Palestine radio that the Palestinian side remains committed to all international guidelines and terms of the Quartet's roadmap for peace.

Israeli museum not so tolerant, group of archaeologists say
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Maher Abukhater - (Blog) October 24, 2011 - 12:00am

A group of prominent international archaeologists are among the latest people to publicly denounce plans to build a museum on the site of a centuries-old Muslim cemetery not far from Jerusalem’s historic Old City.

East Jerusalem school textbooks are a war of words
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Edmund Sanders - (Analysis) October 24, 2011 - 12:00am

When East Jerusalem teachers ask students to open their history books these days, pupils are wondering: Which one? Two sets of textbooks are vying for the formative minds of thousands of Palestinian students in Arabic-language schools in East Jerusalem. One was written by the Palestinian Authority, and the other is a revised version reprinted by Israeli authorities. It's a textbook war that underscores the long-running battle of narratives in the Mideast conflict, where the fight over the future is often rooted in understanding of the past, and schoolbooks can play a critical role.

October 24th

U.S. Looks Increasingly Irrelevant as Mideast Peace Broker
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Inter Press Service (IPS)
by Jonathan Guyer - (Opinion) October 22, 2011 - 12:00am

"…[M]oving forward, we want to see progress on the peace talks," State Department spokesman Mark Toner has emphasised repeatedly over the last two weeks, which have seen Washington's special envoy David Hale shuttling between Jerusalem and Ramallah. "We want to see the two parties, the Palestinians and the Israelis, get back into direct negotiations. And that's where are our focus remains," he said. But there is little reason at this point to believe that Washington's efforts will bear fruit.

After the swap, a chance for peace talks
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Beast
by Rami Khouri - (Opinion) October 22, 2011 - 12:00am

The prisoners exchange that Hamas and Israel concluded this week could be a potential historic turning point in an otherwise moribund “peace process” where no noteworthy breakthrough has occurred in the past nearly 20 years of American-mediated, and therefore mostly Israeli-defined, talks. The prisoners exchange is significant for showing that the most implacable and violent enemies are able to negotiate and reach agreement, when both sides obtain gains that are sufficiently important for them to be able then to make concessions on issues of equal importance to the other side.

Some Israeli citizens just refuse to accept the occupation
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Beast
by Haggai Matar - (Opinion) October 24, 2011 - 12:00am

“I personally don’t have a problem with Israelis, but for your own sake you’d better not tell others around here where you’re from,” a taxi driver said to me during my last visit to Amman. Little did it help to explain that I attend demonstrations against the Israeli occupation regularly and came to Jordan with Palestinian friends.

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