Good morning, Abbas-stan
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Aluf Benn - (Opinion) February 17, 2013 - 1:00am

All indications are that the Palestinians are set to return to the top of Israel’s priority list, despite the evident boredom of the public and the politicians with what is euphemistically called in Hebrew “the diplomtic issue.” Here a muttered comment about peace by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, there a demand during coalition negotiations for renewed negotiations; U.S. President Barack Obama’s visit to Israel is approaching, while in the background the calm of the status quo is weakening and a third intifada looms more threateningly than usual.

Israelis, Palestinians and ‘managing the crisis’
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Arab News
by Hassan Barari - February 17, 2013 - 1:00am

A few days ago, the Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman said that chances to reach an agreement with the Palestinians on the issue of permanent borders would be modest. He argued that whatever happens, parties will be left only with “managing the crisis.” Difficult as it may look, Liberman has articulated what many observers already know. Ever since the peace process has run aground following the advent of Sharon’s first government, events unfolded have only reinforced what Liberman had said.

Israelis, Egyptians discuss security in Cairo
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Ariel Ben Solomon - February 15, 2013 - 1:00am

An Israeli delegation departed from Cairo on Thursday evening after meeting Egyptian officials to discuss security issues in Sinai, the alleged Israeli strike in Syria, and the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, the Egyptian website Al-Shorouk reported Friday.

Israeli on UK team barred from entering Dubai
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
February 15, 2013 - 1:00am

An Israeli soccer player for a British club is being forced to skip a team visit to Dubai because of the United Arab Emirates’ policy on Israelis entering the country. The 25-year-old striker, Itay Schechter, who plays for Swansea City, was prevented from attending the six-day group tra The United Arab Emirates does not have diplomatic ties with Israel, and Israeli passport holders can be arrested and deported upon entering if they lack a special visa. Dubai is one of the UAE’s seven emirates, or city-states.

Bulgaria expels visiting Hamas delegation
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
February 15, 2013 - 1:00am

Bulgarian authorities forced a visiting Hamas delegation to leave the country Friday, the Palestinian Islamic movement said. In a statement, Hamas said security forces stormed the hotel where the three Hamas officials have been staying since Wednesday and transferred them to the airport. Hamas added that the move came as a result of Israel's pressure on Sofia. The delegation was expected to stay for three more days to meet with Bulgarian parliamentarians and party leaders.

Abbas seeks world help to save Palestinians on hunger strike
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Oman Tribune
February 15, 2013 - 1:00am

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas late on Tuesday called on the international community to intervene urgently in support of Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike in Israeli jails. “Things may get out of control if the lives of the hunger strikers are not saved,” Abbas said on Palestinian television. “We ask the international community to respond effectively to ease the situation, otherwise it will be impossible to control and it will deteriorate across the Palestinian territories.

What Obama can achieve with Israel trip
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Miami Herald
by Frida Ghitis - (Editorial) February 14, 2013 - 1:00am

Next month, two months into his second term, President Barack Obama will arrive in Israel, beginning a Middle East trip whose objective is muddled by the turmoil in the region. What exactly does Obama seek to achieve? Any presidential trip begins long before Air Force One leaves the hangar. While the advance travel officials work out the details of the itinerary, the policy, politics and press people are already crafting their desired narrative. Item one on the agenda this time is lowering expectations.

Obama’s Retreat in Parallel to the Arabs’ Surprise
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al-Hayat
by Zuheir Kseibati - February 14, 2013 - 1:00am

The North Korean nuclear experiment was not good news for President Barack Obama, a few hours before the delivery of his State of the Union address. Indeed, now is the time for a “diplomatic solution” which would draw up the roadmap for some sort of a deal with Iran over its nuclear file. And the solution wanted by Obama and the West must guarantee Israel’s security.

Kerry says it like it is
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Gulf News
by George S. Hishmeh - (Opinion) February 14, 2013 - 1:00am

Under American tutelage, history (almost) repeats itself for both the Palestinians and Israelis. President Barack Obama will be travelling next month to Israel, much like what Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu did four years ago when he met the American president for the first time during his first weeks at the White House.

Arab MK to raise issue of prison hunger strikes
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Ariel Ben Solomon - February 13, 2013 - 1:00am

MK Jamal Zahalka (Balad) is trying to internationalize the Palestinian-Israeli conflict by seeking help from the UN and other countries with regards to the release of four Palestinian prisoners on a hunger strike in Israeli jails, he told The Jerusalem Post this week. Zahalka has written a letter to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. Last week he sent a letter to Egypt’s President Mohamed Morsi via the Egyptian Embassy in Israel.

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