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Back to the table?

Back to the table? Author: BICOM Categories: Israel, Palestinians, Quartet    

Lead Israeli negotiator Yitzhak Molcho met with his Palestinian counterpart Saeb Erekat in Amman on January 9 for the second time in as many weeks, with the aim of restarting direct peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. These were the first direct contacts between the parties since the breakdown of peace talks in September 2010.

AIR
AIJAC UPDATE - The Principles and Principals of the Gilo Housing Project

AIJAC UPDATE - The Principles and Principals of the Gilo Housing Project Author: Tzvi Fleischer Categories: Anti-Zionism, Israel, Middle East, NGOs, Palestinians, Quartet, United Nations, Updates    

Today's Update looks at last week's controversial approval for a proposed plan to build 1,100 homes within the boundaries of the Jewish suburb of Gilo in Jerusalem. Gilo lies just over the Green Line and is now home to 40,000 Israelis. As Commentary's Jonathan Tobin explains, Gilo is a symbol for many Israelis, having been a target for numerous terrorist sniper shootings during the Second Intifada and "was the laboratory where Palestinian terrorists sought to discover whether they could force Jews into abandoning their homes. They failed".

Israel welcomes proposal by Quartet, Palestinians negative as usual

Israel welcomes proposal by Quartet, Palestinians negative as usual Author: Sharyn Mittelman Categories: Israel, Palestinians, Quartet, United Nations, Updates    

On 23 September, when the Palestinians presented their application for full membership to the UN, the Middle East Quartet (consisting of the US, EU, Russia and the UN) announced a proposal to bring Israel and the Palestinians back to direct negotiations.

The Quartet statement urged the parties "to overcome the current obstacles and resume direct bilateral Israeli-Palestinian negotiations without delay or preconditions."

The operational paragraphs of the Quartet proposal included:

"1. Within a month there will be a preparatory meeting between the parties to agree an agenda and method of proceeding in the negotiation.
2. At that meeting there will be a commitment by both sides that the objective of any negotiation is to reach an agreement within a timeframe agreed to by the parties but not longer than the end of 2012. The Quartet expects the parties to come forward with comprehensive proposals within three months on territory and security, and to have made substantial progress within six months..."

Tony Blair, the Quartet's envoy to the Middle East, said that if the Israelis and Palestinians are serious about peace, they should respond positively to the initiative.

Israel did immediately respond positively to the Quartet's proposal, however, Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas did not, responding instead negatively.

 

Abbas losing support over hypocrisy in the UN

Abbas losing support over hypocrisy in the UN Author: Daniel Meyerowitz-Katz Categories: Anti-Zionism, Israel, Media/ Academia, Palestinians, Quartet, United Nations, Updates    

As expected, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas submitted an application for Statehood to the UN Secretary General. The application can be downloaded HERE. In addition to this, both Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the UN General Assembly and their two speeches (below) have provoked international uproar, especially in light of the speech one day earlier by US President Barack Obama. As The Australian reported, this was a different Obama from the one who spoke previously in the same forum.

That persistence has put the Palestinians on a collision course with the US and Israel. A frustrated Mr Obama told world leaders yesterday in his UN speech that "there are no shortcuts" to peace...

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In Palestinian statehood bid endgame, the real loser will be peace

In Palestinian statehood bid endgame, the real loser will be peace Author: Daniel Meyerowitz-Katz Categories: America, Israel, Media/ Academia, Palestinians, Quartet, United Nations, Updates    

As the day of reckoning for the Palestinian statehood bid at the UN, now reportedly slated for Friday, draws ever closer, there is a frantic last-minute effort to avert the potentially disastrous showdown in favour of peace talks. Such talks are widely recognised as the only possible way to reach a genuine and lasting solution to the decades-old conflict. For example, Quartet Middle East envoy Tony Blair said yesterday that:

"What we will be looking for over the next few days is a way of putting together something that allows their claims and legitimate aspirations for statehood to be recognized whilst actually renewing the only thing that's going to produce a state, which is a negotiation directly between the two sides...

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Updates
PA spin on unsteady path to unilateral statehood

PA spin on unsteady path to unilateral statehood Author: Daniel Meyerowitz-Katz Categories: America, Palestinians, Quartet, United Nations, Updates    

As reported by Al Jazeera, the US has begun a serious attempt to prevent the Palestinian unilateral statehood bid at the UN later this month. The Palestinian Authority, however, has remained steadfast and continued its refusal to back down.

The New York Times reported on Sunday that the US has launched an attempt to persuade the Palestinians not to seek statehood at the annual UN General Assembly meeting beginning on September 20.

"When it comes to going to the United Nations, I think the train has left the station," Muhammad Shtayyeh, a member of Fatah's central committee who is overseeing the UN bid, said on Sunday...

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"Jewish State" a sticking point for Quartet

"Jewish State" a sticking point for Quartet Author: Daniel Meyerowitz-Katz Categories: Anti-Zionism, Israel, Middle East, Palestinians, Quartet, Updates    

The Middle East Quartet (the UN, the US, the EU and Russia) concluded a high-level meeting yesterday, aimed at re-starting Israeli/Palestinian peace talks, without agreeing on a concluding statement. As Barak Ravid reported for Haaretz, the disagreement was over whether or not the Quartet could demand that the Palestinians recognise Israel as a Jewish State.

"The goal was to give each side something that was important to them," a Western diplomat said. "The Palestinians were supposed to get 1967 borders with land swaps and the Israelis wanted to receive in return the recognition of Israel as the Jewish homeland, but...

The world's eyes unable to focus on Iran

The world's eyes unable to focus on Iran Author: Daniel Meyerowitz-Katz Categories: Holocaust/ War Crimes, Iran, Israel, Quartet, United Nations, Updates    

This blog has been closely following the inexplicable failure of the Western World to apply proper scrutiny to Iran, as well as the internal strife that is currently gripping the Islamic Republic. A very poignant editorial in today's Jerusalem Post argues that the UN, too, has failed to apply adequate attention to the Ayatollah regime. The Post points-out the incredible amount of attention that the Palestinian Authority's upcoming statehood bid in the UN is receiving, juxtaposing this with the relatively negligible consideration given to Iran.

Former US ambassador to the UN, John Bolton, noted this disturbing fact in a meeting Tuesday with The Jerusalem Post editorial staff.