Middle East News: World Press Roundup

A New York Times article profiles G.hos.t, an internet start-up company with offices in Israel and the West Bank (1). Israeli politician Yossi Beilin announces that he will retire from politics following the February elections (2). The Quartet will meet November 6 in Sharm el-Sheik to discuss the state of Palestinian-Israeli peace talks (3). A rocket fired from the Gaza strip results in the Israeli closure of cargo crossings (4). Israel is set to attend an interfaith meeting sponsored by Saudi Arabia at the United Nations (8). A group of Israeli Arab politicians seek to establish a political party to represent their community (11).





Israelis and Palestinians Launch Web Start-Up
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Dina Kraft - October 29, 2008 - 7:00pm


Nibbling doughnuts and wrestling with computer code, the workers at G.ho.st, an Internet start-up here, are holding their weekly staff meeting — with colleagues on the other side of the Israeli-Palestinian divide. They trade ideas through a video hookup that connects the West Bank office with one in Israel in the first joint technology venture of its kind between Israelis and Palestinians.


Beilin to quit Israeli politics
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from BBC News
October 29, 2008 - 7:00pm


The veteran left-wing Israeli politician, Yossi Beilin, has said he will retire from political life after the general election due in February. Mr Beilin initiated ground-breaking talks between Israel and the Palestinians during the early 1990s which led to the Oslo Peace Accords. He also helped develop the Geneva Initiative, an unofficial peace deal negotiated by figures from both sides. A spokeswoman said the former Meretz party head remained committed to peace.


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.


Gaza Rocket Strikes Israel; Cargo Crossings Closed
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Associated Press
October 29, 2008 - 7:00pm


Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip have fired a rocket into southern Israel in violation of a 4-month-old truce, but the strike did not cause any injuries or damage. The Israeli Defense Ministry has responded Thursday by snapping shut cargo crossings into Gaza until further notice. Hezbollah Palestine, a little-known group, has claimed responsibility. It first emerged last week when it claimed responsibility for an Oct. 21 rocket attack. Rocket barrages from Gaza have largely ceased since Israel reached a truce with militants in the territory in June.


Guilt by Insinuation
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The American Prospect
by Tim Fernholz - October 29, 2008 - 7:00pm


"He's an Arab," the woman at a town hall meeting in Minnesota told John McCain, who gently took the microphone from her hand. "No, Ma'am," he said. "He's a decent family man, [a] citizen, that I just happen to have disagreements with on fundamental issues. And that's what this campaign is all about."


Israel needs to show it is serious about peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Gulf News
by George S. Hishmeh - October 29, 2008 - 7:00pm


And now it's Israel's turn to vote in a new parliament. What is good for the goose is good for the gander. The results of the elections in Israel and America are bound to affect the Middle East and, hopefully, the new leaders of the two countries will bring good tidings for traumatised Arabs and Israelis.


Lieberman: Mubarak can 'go to hell'; Peres, Olmert apologize
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Shahar Ilan, Barak Ravid, Yoav Stern - October 29, 2008 - 7:00pm


The 2009 elections will probably end with the establishment of a national unity government. The reason is political rather than geo-strategic. If Tzipi Livni wins she will not be capable of forming a stable center-left government, and therefore she will be forced to cooperate with both Labor and the Likud. If Benjamin Netanyahu wins, he will not want to form an extreme right-wing government, and therefore will choose to have both Kadima and Labor join him. If by some miracle Ehud Barak wins, his slim victory will not leave him any choice but to rely on Livni, Netanyahu and their parties.


Israel Set To Attend Saudi-Organized Gathering
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
by Marc Perelman - October 29, 2008 - 7:00pm


Israel will attend a high-level interfaith meeting sponsored by Saudi Arabia that is set to be held at the United Nations in November. The conference, formally organized by the president of the U.N.’s General Assembly, is a follow-up to another Saudi-sponsored interfaith meeting held in Spain over the summer. Israeli officials were not invited to attend that meeting.


Police release settler who incited against soldiers
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Erfat Weiss - October 29, 2008 - 7:00pm


The police decided to release Qiryat Arba settler Shmuel Ben-Yishai from custody on Thursday afternoon, after completing his interrogation. Ben-Yishai was arrested earlier in the day for inciting against IDF soldiers following Saturday night's evacuation of an illegal outpost in the West Bank city of Hebron. He was released to his home under court restrictions.


Special situation status in Gaza- vicinity communities lifted
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Hanan Greenberg - October 29, 2008 - 7:00pm


Defense Minister Ehud Barak decided Thursday not to extend the "special situation in the home front" status declared in the Gaza vicinity communities 18 months ago. A "special situation" order enables security forces to instruct the shutting down of schools, to operate essential industries and to close certain areas for traffic. The order was first applied on the Gaza communities in May 2007 and has since been extended several times. Barak's decision was made just a month shy of the scheduled end of the ceasefire agreement between Israel and the militant groups in the Gaza Strip.


MKs mull umbrella party to represent all Israeli Arabs
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Yoav Stern - October 29, 2008 - 7:00pm


A group of Israeli Arab politicians are seeking to establish a new party that would represent all members of their fragmented community in the upcoming general elections. The group, which is made up of former and currently serving MKs, has proposed that Science, Culture and Sport Minister Ghaleb Majadele (Labor) head the party, which is to work for the welfare of Israeli Arabs. Majadele's office has confirmed that prominent members of the Israeli Arab community have indeed proposed this to him. It said the minister would bring the matter to the Arab camp within Labor.


In the name of peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Ari Shavit - (Editorial) October 29, 2008 - 7:00pm


The 2009 elections will probably end with the establishment of a national unity government. The reason is political rather than geo-strategic. If Tzipi Livni wins she will not be capable of forming a stable center-left government, and therefore she will be forced to cooperate with both Labor and the Likud. If Benjamin Netanyahu wins, he will not want to form an extreme right-wing government, and therefore will choose to have both Kadima and Labor join him. If by some miracle Ehud Barak wins, his slim victory will not leave him any choice but to rely on Livni, Netanyahu and their parties.





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