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ATFP News Roundup October 14, 2016


Israeli President Rivlin hosts a quiet meeting of Muslim and Jewish leaders. (New York Times)

The Palestinian Authority welcomes the passing of a UNESCO resolution that sharply criticizes Israeli policies. (Ma'an\Times of Israel)

The United States, Israeli officials and Jewish groups reacted with outrage to a preliminary vote by the United Nations cultural agency that denies a Jewish connection to the Old City of Jerusalem. (JTA\Ha'aretz)

Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett said Israel would suspend its cooperation with UNESCO, because of the UN agency’s decision to ignore Jewish ties to holy sites in Jerusalem. (JTA\Times of Israel)

The UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Nickolay Mladenov expressed concerns over the situation in Gaza, and urged Israel to understand that its policies on the besieged enclave only “escalates violence.” (Ma'an)

Anti-occupation groups Americans for Peace Now, B'Tselem to address UN Security Council session on settlements. (Ha'aretz)

DIY submachine guns are popping up across the West Bank. (Washington Post)

The number of terrorist attacks perpetrated in Israel dropped in August to 93 — the lowest monthly tally on record since March 2015 and the first dip since then below the 100-incident mark. (JTA)

Israeli soldiers raided a “mourning tent” dedicated to Misbah Abu Sbeih, who was killed by Israeli forces Sunday after carrying out a deadly shooting attack in occupied East Jerusalem, in the the occupied West Bank city of Hebron. (Ma'an)

Egyptian authorities decided to open the Rafah crossing on both sides this week on Saturdayand Sunday. (Ma'an)

Islamic State has crushed a rebellion plot in Mosul, led by one of the group's commanders who aimed to switch sides and help deliver the caliphate's Iraqi capital to government forces, residents and Iraqi security officials said. (Reuters)

Forces trained by the Turkish military at the Bashiqa camp in northern Iraq will take part in the planned operation to drive Islamic State out of the city of Mosul, Turkey's state-run Anadolu Agency reported on Friday. (Reuters)

Syria's Pres. Assad said that the Syrian army's capture of Aleppo, which has come under renewed bombardment in an effort to seize its rebel-held sector, would be "a very important springboard" to pushing "terrorists" back to Turkey. (Reuters)

At least 20 people, mostly Syrian rebel fighters, were killed after a car bomb exploded on Thursday near a checkpoint close to the Bab al Salama crossing on the Turkish-Syrian border in northern Syria, two witnesses said. (Reuters)

In Aleppo, a drone video reveals a destruction so complete that it obliterates even a sense of time. (New York Times)

Yemen sees U.S. strikes as evidence of hidden hand behind Saudi air war. (New York Times)

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi denied on Thursday Ethiopian accusations that his country was supporting the opposition after a wave of violent protests that left hundreds dead. (Reuters)

Turkey could hold a referendum on changing the constitution and introducing a presidential system before the spring, its justice minister said on Friday, days after the government revived plans that would hand incumbent Tayyip Erdogan greater powers. (Reuters)


Akiva Eldar says new data shows that the settlements in the West Bank are not an irreversible situation, and that most of the population growth in settlements is due to births — not immigration of Israelis into the settlements. (Al-Monitor)

Ahmad Melhem says Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' attendance at the funeral of former Israeli President Shimon Peres has angered the Palestinian public and political factions, increasing the chance of violence in the streets. (Al-Monitor)

Shlomi Eldar says when the wave of Palestinian violence broke out, most of the assailants were youngsters who believed that their acts would bring closer Palestinian statehood; but recent attacks seem motivated largely by religious beliefs. (Al-Monitor)

Raphael Ahren says outrageous as it may be, UNESCO’s Jerusalem vote has a silver lining. (Times of Israel)

Shlomo Sand says all those who don’t understand why it was so difficult for the Palestinian-Israelis’ political representatives to show their final respects to Shimon Peres, should recall Arafat’s funeral and the 'respect' shown him by the Israelis. (Ha'aretz)

Abdul Rahman Al Rashed says France is playing a key role in the Syrian conflict at a time when most countries have preferred to avoid confrontation. (The National)

Anna Lekas Miller writes that the Left can’t afford to ignore the facts on the ground in Aleppo. (The National)

Michael T. Klare says “take the oil” isn’t just an applause line — it’s a policy that has been discussed in Washington for decades. (Foreign Policy)

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