Middle East News: World Press Roundup

NEWS: While the PA says it's canceling tax increases to meet the demands of protesters, union leaders say demonstrations will continue. Protests in Ramallah continue, and focus on criticism of Palestinian leaders, especially PM Fayyad. Israeli officials say the US has refused a request by PM Netanyahu to meet Pres. Obama next month, although the White House plays down the report. Netanyahu orders the release of Palestinian tax revenues to the cash-strapped PA. Hamas leader Hanniyeh is visiting Egypt. Six Jewish Israeli teenagers are charged in an attack on a Palestinian man in Jerusalem. Israel is ranked the second-best educated country in the OECD. Hamas sentences a man in Gaza to death for collaboration with Israel. Palestinians who have fled Syria protest against conditions in a Lebanese refugee camp. The US is reportedly attempting to dissuade Palestinians from seeking non-member observer state status at the UN in September. COMMENTARY: Daniel Levy says Israel really does have to confront the choice between continuing the occupation and becoming a single, democratic state. Saud Abu Ramadan says both a free-trade agreement with Egypt and continued smuggling through tunnels would benefit Hamas. Amira Hass says the PA serves everyone except its own public. Oudeh Basharat says Israeli journalists show more sympathy for tomatoes than they do for Arabs. Moshe Arens says the US-Israel relationship doesn't depend on individual politicians. Steve Caplan says attempts to boycott Israeli academics and scientists are hypocritical and counterproductive. Ron Kampeas says US-Israel tensions regarding Iran are boiling over. David Amitai says Israel's Jews and Arabs are united by food, if nothing else. Mairav Zonszein says a new study shows violence begets violence among Israeli and Palestinian children.

Palestinian Tax Increases Canceled in Move to Calm West Bank Protests
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
September 11, 2012 - 12:00am

RAMALLAH, West Bank (Reuters) — In a reversal aimed at ending protests that have swept the West Bank, the Palestinian Authority announced Tuesday that it had canceled recent tax increases. But a union leader rejected the concession and said street demonstrations would continue.

Protests renew in Ramallah despite Palestinian PM's measures to ease economic crisis
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

RAMALLAH, Sept. 11 (Xinhua) -- Despite Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad's declaration to introduce easing measures against the high cost of living, a new demonstration was organized in the city of Ramallah Tuesday night calling for the immediate end of the economic crisis. In Ramallah, hundreds of angry protesters marched towards the headquarters of President Mahmoud Abbas. They held banners calling for a final resolution to the economic crisis.

Salam Fayyad catches Palestinians' flak as West Bank protests continue
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Hugh Naylor - September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

RAMALLAH // As large protests sweep the West Bank for a second week, no official has faced as much criticism over the ailing economy as Salam Fayyad. Palestinian demonstrators have burnt effigies of the Palestinian Authority (PA) prime minister in previous rallies and yesterday rallied outside his office and called for his resignation. Video from Monday also showed protesters throwing their shoes at a poster of Mr Fayyad.

Are W. Bank riots the start of ‘Palestinian Spring’?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Ilene Prusher - September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

Thousands of young Palestinians out on the streets – chanting slogans, throwing rocks, burning tires. Working class drivers striking to protest against the price of gas, middle- class merchants shuttering their shops to avoid damages and the moneyed classes chattering nervously about whether this is really as momentous as it looks.

US rejects Netanyahu meeting request -Israel official
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
by Allyn Fisher-Ilan - September 11, 2012 - 12:00am

JERUSALEM, Sept 11 (Reuters) - The White House has rejected a request by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to meet President Barak Obama in the United States this month, an Israeli official said on Tuesday, after a row erupted between the allies over Iran's nuclear programme.

White House plays down reports of Netanyahu snub
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Los Angeles Times
by Paul Richter - September 11, 2012 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON — The White House struggled Tuesday to dispel reports that it had snubbed a request for a meeting this month from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, as friction between the two allies again burst into the open.

Israeli PM orders transfer of tax revenues to cash-strapped PNA
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

JERUSALEM, Sept. 11 (Xinhua) -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered Tuesday night the transfer of 250 million NIS ( around 63 million U.S. dollars) of Palestinian tax revenues to the Palestinian National Authority (PNA), which is facing a severe financial crisis.

Hamas PM to visit Egypt Thursday
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

AZA, Sept. 11 (Xinhua) -- Ismail Haneya, prime minister of the Hamas ruler in the Gaza Strip, will travel to Egypt Thursday to discuss security issues and the closure of the Gaza Strip, a Hamas spokesman said Tuesday. Haneya will hold talks with Egyptian Prime Minister Hesham Qandil, said Taher Al-Nounou in a brief statement.

Jerusalem teens charged with attacking Palestinian
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Oz Rosenberg - September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

Six Jewish teenagers from Jerusalem have been charged in Jerusalem District Juvenile Court with attacking an East Jerusalem Palestinian and causing him serious injury, including a broken ankle.  Four of the suspects have admitted to assaulting Ibrahim Abu Ta'a, 28, saying they thought he was “taking advantage” of an intoxicated Jewish woman he was accompanying. Abu Ta'a, from East Jerusalem's Ras al-Amud neighborhood, and his co-workers at Jerusalem's Mamilla Hotel were at a club in the Talpiot neighborhood on the night of September 5-6.

OECD: Israel is second-most educated country
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ynetnews
by Tomer Velmer - September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

Israel is the second-most educated country after Canada, a recent report published by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) said. According to the “Education at a Glance 2012” report, Israel came in second place, in terms of the percentage of 25 to 64 year-olds that have reached higher education.  

Gaza court sentences man to death for collaboration
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

GAZA CITY (Ma’an) -- A 45-year-old man in Gaza was sentenced to death on Wednesday on charges of collaborating with Israel, Ma'an's reporter said. A Gaza court also sentenced the man's 40-year-old wife to 10 years in prison for her part in the alleged collaboration charges.

Palestinians who fled Syria protest conditions at south Lebanon camp
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Mohammed Zaatari - September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

SIDON, Lebanon: Palestinian refugees who fled the violence in Syria protested at Ain al-Hilweh refugee camp in south Lebanon Wednesday, accusing UNRWA of ignoring them.

US seeks to head off Palestinian UN
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Agence France Presse (AFP)
September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON (AFP) - The United States is trying to dissuade Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas from seeking non-member status at the United Nations at top UN meetings later this month, an official said.“We continue to make clear that we believe that the only realistic path for the Palestinians to achieve statehood is through direct negotiations,” State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said.Abbas said on Saturday he will make a bid on September 27 to upgrade the Palestinians to non-member status before the annual UN General Assembly.

Seven Lean Years of Peacemaking
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Daniel Levy - (Opinion) September 11, 2012 - 12:00am

SEVEN years ago today, the Israeli flag was lowered over the Gaza Strip after approximately 7,500 Israeli settlers left or were forcibly removed.

News Analysis: Free Trade Zone with Egypt may serve Hamas interests
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Xinhua
by Saud Abu Ramadan - (Analysis) September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

GAZA, Sept. 12 (Xinhua) -- Palestinian observers and analysts believe that both the smuggling tunnels that were dug underneath the borderline between Egypt and the Gaza Strip ruled by Islamic Hamas movement, or a future free trade area at the borders with Egypt, are serving the movement's interests.

The PA serves everyone but its public
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Amira Hass - (Opinion) September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

The West Bank is burning, and where is Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas? In India, on an official visit. The distance between New Delhi and Ramallah is an apt metaphor for the alienated relationship between the chairman of the PLO - the organization that sees itself as "the sole legal representative of the Palestinian people" - and those it claims to represent.

Being a tomato beats being an Arab
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Oudeh Basharat - (Opinion) September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

Correspondents who deal with tomatoes show more empathy for their subjects than do correspondents who cover Arab affairs. Channel 2's Roni Daniel, for example, so staunchly defends the subjects of his coverage, that it sometimes seems as though the IDF spokesperson is on the screen, not the network's military affairs correspondent. The Arab affairs correspondent for Ch. 10, Zvi Yehezkeli, depicts his subjects in as corrosively a negative light as he can possibly muster.

Misunderstanding America
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Moshe Arens - (Opinion) September 11, 2012 - 12:00am

The self-appointed experts on American-Israeli relations are wrong again. According to them these relations have sunk to a new low, and the Netanyahu government is doing inestimable damage to a relationship which, as all recognize, is an integral part of Israel's security.

Academic boycotts, science and hypocrisy
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Guardian
by Steve Caplan - (Opinion) September 11, 2012 - 12:00am

I am a scientist and a citizen of the world. Born in the US, raised in Canada, trained in Israel and back again in the US. Now this is not a particularly unusual story. Even in Israel, as a graduate student, I encountered other graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and principal investigators from around the globe. In my own graduate lab in Israel, there was a Chinese-born woman who trained in the US and had been living and working as a senior investigator in Israel since the mid-1970s. Science is an international affair.

U.S.-Israel tensions on Iran are boiling over
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
by Ron Kampeas - (Opinion) September 11, 2012 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Between the red lines, the deadlines, the diplomacy and the dress downs, the vaunted cooperation between Israel and the United States on whether and when to strike Iran seems to be in a free fall.

Food unites Israeli Jews and Arabs in ways politics cannot
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by David Amitai - (Opinion) September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

Every week for the past five months, a group of Arab and Jewish women from neighboring towns near Haifa, Israel, have come together to cook. Each week, they meet in a different woman’s home, discovering their commonalities and differences by sharing recipes, culinary traditions and childhood memories.

Study: Violence Begets Violence Among Palestinian, Israeli Youth
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al-Monitor
by Mairav Zonszein - (Analysis) September 11, 2012 - 12:00am

Early on the morning of Aug. 17, a Palestinian youth was beaten unconscious by a mob of Israeli teenagers in West Jerusalem’s Zion Square. The assailants were teenagers, some as young as 13, and many more youths allegedly stood around and watched. One perpetrator told the press that as far as he is concerned, the victim should die because “he is an Arab." 

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