Mideast peace: one more push
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Howard Lafranchi - November 5, 2008 - 7:00pm

Less than a year after President Bush launched an effort to reach a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by the end of his term, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice sets out Wednesday on what could be a final push to put Mr. Bush's stamp on the sputtering peace process.

White House says Israeli-Palestinian deal unlikely
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
by Arshad Mohammed - November 5, 2008 - 7:00pm

The White House acknowledged for the first time on Thursday that Israel and the Palestinians were unlikely to reach a peace deal before President George W. Bush leaves office in January. U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, beginning a four-day visit to the Middle East, said Israel's decision to call a parliamentary election, scheduled for February 10, had created a "different situation" that made it "very difficult" to come to an agreement.

P.A.- Israeli File to ‘Move Smoothly’ to Obama
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Media Line
by Abd el-Raouf Arnaout - November 5, 2008 - 7:00pm

An American committee headed by Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs David Welch is preparing a detailed file on the ongoing negotiations between the Palestinians and the Israelis ahead of submitting it to the new United States administration, The Media Line (TML) has learned. Yassir ‘Abd Rabboh, top aide to Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud ‘Abbas, said that U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice had informed the Palestinians of this development at their meeting with her in New York in September.

Rice off to Mideast as peace deadline looms
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Matthew Lee - November 4, 2008 - 7:00pm

Fighting irrelevance and a ticking clock, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice embarks Wednesday on yet another Middle East peacemaking trip, hoping to secure fragile Israeli-Palestinian negotiations and leave a viable process for the incoming Obama administration. With just 77 days left in office, Rice will be making her eighth trip to Israel and the Palestinian territories since the parties set a year-end goal of reaching a peace deal at last November's Annapolis peace conference. She will also visit Egypt and Jordan to shore up Arab support for the talks.

A direct and immediate impact
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bitterlemons
by Ghassan Khatib - November 2, 2008 - 7:00pm

The domestic Israeli political scene and balance of powers have a very strong effect on the peace process and the domestic Palestinian scene. The Israeli balance of power is in turn deeply influenced by Israeli public opinion. The latter sets the limits for how far negotiators can go as well as for how far Israeli bulldozers may reach.

Advance the dialogue regardless of transition
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bitterlemons
by Gilead Sher - November 2, 2008 - 7:00pm

Global challenges of economy and security become an ever-growing concern in transition periods such as the present one. In that context, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and other geopolitical developments in the Middle East represent a myriad of problems of leadership, legitimacy, continuity and practicability. The concurrent transition among the terms in office of the relevant actors in the arena--the United States, Israel and the Palestinian Authority--should be meticulously prepared for.

Maintenance mode
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bitterlemons
by Yossi Alpher - November 2, 2008 - 7:00pm

Israel finds itself in a unique position in terms of both its political history and the annals of the Israel-Arab peace process. PM Ehud Olmert has resigned and elections have been set for February 10, 2009. The elections have caught Israel in the throes of two peace processes, with the PLO and Syria. Olmert, who is not running for reelection, has indicated that he intends to pursue negotiations on both fronts.

Abbas sees no peace deal with Israel this year
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
November 2, 2008 - 7:00pm

Israel and the Palestinians will not be able to reach a peace agreement before Washington's target date of the end of this year, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said Monday. "I don't think it's possible to clear an accord by the end of this year as both the U.S. and the Israeli administrations are now busy with other matters and the very short time does not allow for striking such a deal," Abbas said at the start of a two-day visit to Romania.

Egypt would hand over prisoner swap talks - Mubarak
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from
October 30, 2008 - 7:00pm

EGYPT WOULD WILLINGLY stand aside and let some other government mediate a prisoner release between Israelis and Palestinians, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said in an interview published on Thursday. Egypt has been trying for months, so far without success, to arrange the exchange of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit for hundreds of Palestinians held in Israeli jails. Palestinians in Gaza have been holding Shalit for more than two years.

Quartet to meet in Egypt on Nov. 6
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
by Karin Laub - October 29, 2008 - 7:00pm

A senior Palestinian official said Wednesday the Quartet of Middle East peacemakers will meet Nov. 6 at Sharm el-Sheik to assess progress in Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the meeting's date has not been announced, said the gathering in Egypt would include U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. The aim is to hear the progress Israeli and Palestinian negotiators have made in their talks. The so-called Quartet is made up of the U.N., the U.S., the European Union and Russia.

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