Middle East News: World Press Roundup

NEWS: PLO leaders say they have already submitted their UNGA resolution, and have reportedly reassured member states they will not rush to try to join the ICC. A large group of Palestinian factions in Gaza say they support the initiative. France and Spain reiterate they will vote for the resolution. Palestinians confidently predict victory. The Boston Globe outlines the key players and their positions on the resolution. Israel seems to be backing away from dire threats of retaliation. PM Erdogan says he's still considering a trip to Gaza. Polls show PM Netanyahu well-positioned to win January's Israeli election. Gaza factions thank Iran after the conflict with Israel. The Washington Post outlines a series of Israeli decisions that led to the killing of the Abu Zor family in Gaza. The PA says it will seek legal action if it discovers the late Pres. Arafat was murdered. Cairo says it plans to convene Palestinian factions for more reconciliation talks after the UN initiative this week. An unnamed senior Israeli official reportedly describes Qatar as "a bitter enemy." Efforts are underway off the coast of Israel to raise the wreck of the Altalena, a ship that was sunk in a confrontation between the nascent Israeli military and Jewish militants. COMMENTARY: Jonathan Adelman says Hamas is no winner in the recent Gaza conflict. Chemi Shalev says, despite its tough talk, Israel is unlikely to overreact to the Palestinian UN initiative. Zvi Bar'el says Israel should recognize its interests in the creation of a Palestinian state. The Jerusalem Post says Palestinian leaders are making a mistake with the UN initiative. Abdel Rahman Al-Rashed says he hopes Hezbollah follows through with threats to attack Israel, because that would result in the end of the group's power and be a great boon to Lebanon and the Syrian revolution. Daniel Nisman argues Iran still controls Gaza. Carlo Strenger says Israel is missing another historic opportunity by opposing the Palestinian UN initiative. Elisheva Goldberg lists extremist statements regarding annexation of the occupied Palestinian territories by the newly elected hierarchy of Israel's ruling Likud party. Aaron David Miller says Pres. Obama will probably again engage in Palestinian-Israeli peacemaking and he hopes it will be more successful this time. Michael Lerner says Israel and the US should welcome the Palestinian UN initiative.

Ashrawi says PLO has submitted UN bid
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
November 28, 2012 - 1:00am

BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- The PLO has submitted a final draft resolution to the UN General Assembly, PLO Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi said Tuesday. Ashrawi told Ma'an the final resolution was submitted on Monday afternoon to the UN in New York, requesting an upgrade of Palestine's UN status to an "observer state." The UN General Assembly is expected to pass the resolution on Thursday.

Palestinians: No rush to join int'l court after UN
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
November 28, 2012 - 1:00am

UNITED NATIONS - The Palestinians will not rush to sign up to the International Criminal Court if they win a UN status upgrade on Thursday, but warned that seeking action against Israel in the court would remain an option, said the Palestinian UN observer.

Gaza factions to join rally supporting UN bid
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
November 28, 2012 - 1:00am

GAZA CITY (Ma’an) – Representatives of all Palestinian factions on Tuesday held a meeting in Gaza City during which all factions agreed to organize a joint rally raising Palestinian flags only to show support to the Palestinian statehood bid. Member of the politburo of the Palestinian People’s Party Walid al-Awad told Ma’an that factions would submit a memo to the government in Gaza about the rally, planned for Thursday.

France to Vote in Favor of Palestinians’ U.N. Bid
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The New York Times
by Christine Hauser, Scott Sayare - November 27, 2012 - 1:00am

PARIS — Support in Europe for a heightened Palestinian profile at the United Nations grew on Tuesday when the French government said it would vote in favor of the Palestinians’ bid for nonmember observer status, embracing a move that Israel and the United States have opposed.

Spain to recognize Palestinian state at UN
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Associated Press
November 28, 2012 - 1:00am

MADRID — Spain's foreign minister says Spain will vote in favor of recognition of a Palestinian state at the U.N. General Assembly this week.

Palestinians predict historic UN vote on statehood
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Associated Press
November 27, 2012 - 1:00am

UNITED NATIONS — The Palestinians predicted a historic U.N. vote recognizing their statehood this week, praising important new support from France on Tuesday and likely backing from other European nations seen as critical to enhancing their international standing.

Key players and positions on Palestinian statehood
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Associated Press
by Lori Hinnant - November 28, 2012 - 1:00am

The vote is largely symbolic, the outcome nearly assured: The Palestinians and Israelis are closely watching the evolving positions of a few key countries in Thursday’s U.N. General Assembly resolution to raise the Palestinians’ status from a U.N. observer to a nonmember observer state. The United States and Israel are strongly opposed, saying they fear it will only slow progress toward a peace deal.

Israel won't punish Palestinians for UN statehood bid
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Barak Ravid - November 28, 2012 - 1:00am

Avigdor Lieberman was asked on Tuesday during a closed meeting what will happen tomorrow night. The questioner hoped to hear the foreign minster's assessment of the vote due to be held in the UN General Assembly on recognizing Palestine as a non-member observer state, but Lieberman replied with typical cynicism: "It will be a good soccer game."

Turkey's Erdogan considers Gaza visit
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Associated Press
November 28, 2012 - 1:00am

ANKARA, Turkey — Turkey's prime minister says he may visit the Gaza Strip alongside Hamas' supreme leader, Khaled Mashaal.

Poll shows Israel's Netanyahu romping in election
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Associated Press
November 28, 2012 - 1:00am

JERUSALEM — A new poll shows Israeli prime minister's hardline Likud Party handily winning the Jan. 22 elections despite the entry of a dovish new party into the race.

Gazans say "Thank you Iran" after Israel conflagration
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
by Nidal al-Mughrabi - November 27, 2012 - 1:00am

GAZA, Nov 27 (Reuters) - Gazans offered very public thanks to Iran on Tuesday for helping them in this month's fight against Israel, when Iranian-made missiles were fired out of the Palestinian enclave towards Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

In Gaza, attempted warning failed to protect civilians
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Washington Post
by Scott Wilson - November 27, 2012 - 1:00am

In GAZA CITY — Afew minutes before 3 a.m. on Nov. 19, Khalid Azzam’s cellphone rang.

PA says will take Israel to ICC if tests prove Arafat assassinated
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
November 28, 2012 - 1:00am

RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- The Palestinian Authority will start legal proceedings against Israel at the International Criminal Court if forensic tests prove that President Yasser Arafat was murdered, chief investigator Tawfiq Tirawi said Tuesday.

Official: Cairo will invite factions for reconciliation talks
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Ma'an News Agency
November 24, 2012 - 1:00am

BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Egypt will invite Palestinian factions to Cairo to resume reconciliation talks after Palestine's bid for a UN status upgrade this week, a political official said Saturday. Khalil Assaf, who heads the coalition of independents in the West Bank and also chairs the public freedoms committee established under the reconciliation deal, said he expects Egypt's invitation in the coming days.

Senior diplomatic source: Qatar is a bitter enemy
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Herb Keinon - November 28, 2012 - 1:00am

Reflecting intense anger and frustration at Qatar for its diplomatic and financial support of Hamas, a senior diplomatic source on Wednesday characterized the Persian Gulf state as a “bitter enemy of Israel.”

Raising Israel's Altalena ship 'a lesson for the future'
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from BBC World News
by Matthew Bell - November 27, 2012 - 1:00am

A project to raise a sunken ship in Israel, the Altalena, is stirring up painful memories of a violent confrontation between the army of the newborn state and the Irgun Jewish paramilitary group, reports PRI The World's Matthew Bell.

Hamas is no winner in the Gaza ceasefire with Israel (+video)
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Christian Science Monitor
by Johnathan Adelman - November 27, 2012 - 1:00am

Denver The Hamas leadership has claimed total victory in the truce that started the day before Thanksgiving after eight days of brutal warfare with Israel. And on the surface, this seems to make sense.

Israel’s motto on Palestinian UN bid: Speak loudly, but carry a small stick
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Chemi Shalev - (Analysis) November 28, 2012 - 1:00am

With France supporting, Britain leaning, and even bosom buddy Australia abstaining, the Palestinian request to be recognized as a “non-member observer state” at the United Nations appears to be a done deal and is set to be approved by an overwhelming majority.

Give the Palestinians a state
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Zvi Barel - (Opinion) November 28, 2012 - 1:00am

Exactly 65 years after the United Nations passed the Partition Plan, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas will ask the General Assembly to grant Palestine the status of a non-member state. Nineteen years after the signing of the Oslo Accords, 10 years after U.S. President George W.

Misguided UN bid
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
(Editorial) November 27, 2012 - 1:00am

Tomorrow, November 29, the PLO will attempt to erase a colossal historic mistake. Sixty-five years to the day after foolishly squandering their opportunity for national self-determination by rejecting the 1947 UN Partition Plan for Palestine and instead launching a war to snuff out the Jewish State at its very inception, the Palestinian people – under the PLO’s leadership – hope to go back in time.

We are with Hezbollah, let it fight Israel
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Arab News
by Abdul Rahman Al-Rashed - (Opinion) November 27, 2012 - 1:00am

The leader of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah, has finally threatened that he will initiate an attack against Israel and bombard it with thousands of “Alfajr” bombs.

Why Iran Still Controls Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Al-Monitor
by Daniel Nisman - (Opinion) November 27, 2012 - 1:00am


Israel Missed Its Chance—Again
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Beast
by Carlo Strenger - (Opinion) November 27, 2012 - 1:00am

Abbas’s bid for UN recognition of Palestine as a non-member state seems set to succeed. Israel has missed another golden opportunity to capitalize on this move to undermine Islamist extremism and assure Israel’s future as the democratic homeland of the Jews.

Likud: The Party of Annexation
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Beast
by Elisheva Goldberg - (Opinion) November 27, 2012 - 1:00am

Leaders of the organized American Jewish community often claim that across the political spectrum, Israelis have embraced the two-state solution. But as the gates of the Likud primary polls swung shut late last night, the doors to a one-state solution swung open. 

The Peace Process Tooth Fairy
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Foreign Policy
by Aaron David Miller - (Opinion) November 27, 2012 - 1:00am

I'd love to believe in the peace process tooth fairy. I really would. In the wake of the Israeli-Hamas ceasefire in Gaza, I'd love to believe:

Why U.S., Israel should welcome Palestinian move at U.N.
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from CNN
by Rabbi Michael Lerner - (Opinion) November 28, 2012 - 1:00am

(CNN) -- Israel's security can only be assured when its neighbors believe that it is no longer oppressing the Palestinian people but instead living in peace and harmony with them.

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