The 2008 Democratic Party Platform and the Middle East
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Foreign Policy In Focus
by Stephen Zunes - September 4, 2008 - 8:00pm

The excitement over the nomination of Barack Obama as the presidential nominee of the Democratic Party has been tempered by some key foreign policy planks in the 2008 platform, particularly those relating to the greater Middle East region. These positions appear to run counter to Obama's pledge early in the primary race to end the mindset that led to the Iraq War.

Karim Edwan's Skepticism About The U.s.-backed Middle East Peace Process Is Rooted In His Morning Commute.
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Agence France Presse (AFP)
March 6, 2008 - 7:30pm

British humanitarian agencies said Thursday that the situation in the Gaza Strip was the worst in 40 years and urged the European Union to hold talks with Hamas, which runs the impoverished territory. They also called for an end of Israel's punishing blockade of Gaza, which has worsened an already desperate state of affairs for the civilian population.

Under Pressure, Abbas Says He’ll Talk Peace, But Actual Dialogue May Be Remote
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Helene Cooper, Isabel Kershner - March 6, 2008 - 7:20pm

After coming under heavy pressure from the United States, Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, said Wednesday that he intended to resume negotiations with Israel on a peace plan. But he did not say when he would return to talks, and he is under political pressure at home not to do so if the Palestinian death toll continues to rise from Israeli attacks on Gaza.

International Community Rips Israel Over Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
March 3, 2008 - 6:57pm

Leaders around the world condemned Israel's attacks on Palestinians in the Gaza Strip over the weekend, calling on both sides to end the recent escalation in violence. EU president Slovenia said on Sunday that Israel's attacks were disproportionate and violated international law.

U.s. To Announce New Aid Plan For West Bank, Gaza Strip
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Barak Ravid - February 22, 2008 - 5:48pm

The United States plans to announce tens of millions of dollars in new aid for the West Bank and Gaza next week to ease the humanitarian crisis in the Palestinian territories, U.S. officials said on Friday. The funds will be channeled through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian refugees, which handles U.S. and other assistance for food, health, education and other areas, said U.S. officials, who declined to provide the exact figure as the official announcement will be made during a trip to the region next week.

Eu Lawmakers Lambast Israel Over Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
February 21, 2008 - 7:17pm

European Union lawmakers urged Israel on Thursday not to inflict "collective punishment" on Gaza's population, saying its isolation of the territory had failed and its actions were endangering civilians.  

Jordan Warns Israeli Practices Yeild To Extremism
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jordan Times
February 20, 2008 - 6:51pm

Jordan on Tuesday warned of Israeli measures that lead to exacerbating the living conditions in the Palestinian territories, describing these practices as a recipe for extremism. Israeli sieges and closures of roads contribute only to worsening the situation in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, Minister of State for Media Affairs and Communications Nasser Judeh told the opening session of a two-day seminar by the UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.

Bolstering Palestinian Moderates
In Print by Ghaith al-Omari - The Washington Times (Opinion) - February 10, 2008 - 1:00am

The recent breach of the Gaza-Egypt border was an avoidable setback to the newly revived Palestinian-Israeli peace process. It has shown what happens when grand political commitments — made by Israeli, U.S. and Arab leaders — fail to translate into concrete policies, structures and behavior. Had the situation been addressed in a timely fashion, control of the Gaza crossings to Egypt and Israel could have been a major political gain for the moderate government of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Salam Fayyad.

Gaza Blockade Collective Punishment Says Hrw
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Palestine Chronicle
(Editorial) February 5, 2008 - 7:27pm

Israel's crippling blockade of the Gaza Strip is a collective punishment of the 1.5 million population of the small, overcrowded territory, Human Rights Watch said in its annual report on Thursday, January 31. "The Israeli and Western economic embargo of Gaza, Israel's almost total closure of Gaza's border crossings, ongoing lawlessness in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, and heightened Israeli restrictions on freedom of movement in the West Bank contributed to a serious human rights and humanitarian crisis," said the report cited by Agence France-Presse (AFP).

Brotherhood Sought
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al- Ahram
by Serene Assir - February 1, 2008 - 6:42pm

One week on from the mass act of popular refusal among Palestinians that broke the siege of Gaza, movement in and out of the occupied territory has being radically cut down as Egyptian Central Security forces were deployed in thousands to block the entry of Palestinians into the Sinai Peninsula via Rafah and Arish. Meanwhile, calls to Egyptian authorities for a greater show of solidarity -- indeed, sovereignty from the will of Israel -- to break the siege imposed seven months ago on Gaza intensified over the course of the week.

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