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Updated: 6 hours 14 min ago

Stand Firm, John Kerry and express fundamental U.S. positions

Sat, 04/19/2014 - 00:00
Zbigniew Brzezinski, Frank Carlucci, Lee Hamilton, Carla A. Hills, Thomas Pickering and Henry Siegman - Politico Magazine - It’s time for the secretary of state to insist on America’s position on Middle East peace. The necessary confidentiality that Secretary Kerry imposed on the resumed negotiations should not preclude a far more forceful and public expression of certain fundamental U.S. positions. [ak]

The New York Times agrees to be gagged by Israel

Sat, 04/19/2014 - 00:00
Ali Abunimah - Electronic Intifada - Why does Rudoren believe she is bound by gag orders when two senior editors said they were unaware of the newspaper ever agreeing to be bound by such gag orders? Contrary to the claim that Israeli gags have never been challenged, I found at least one instance where the Times does indeed appear to openly defy an Israeli gag order. [bz]

Why the Israeli-Palestinian talks fail, though patient, serious diplomacy appears to be bearing fruit in many places

Sat, 04/19/2014 - 00:00
Rami G. Khouri - The Daily Star - The Israeli demands from the Palestinians in areas like security, refugees and recognizing Israel as a Jewish state are so extreme that they cannot be met without totally humiliating the Palestinians. The Palestinians in turn get little respect from the Israelis or the American mediators even, who effectively ignore the core demand that the Palestinian refugee problem of 1947-1948 be acknowledged and redressed in a mutually agreeable manner. [bz]

Why is Israel opposed to Palestine joining international treaties?

Sat, 04/19/2014 - 00:00
Middle East Monitor - The anxiety in Israel stems from the fact that many of its actions - not least, settlement building - are illegal under international law. One area of particular concern is the Geneva Convention`s prohibition of colonizing occupied land. [bz]

Statement by Dr. Saeb Erekat marking the Day of the Palestinian Prisoner

Sat, 04/19/2014 - 00:00
Saeb Erekat - PNN - For Palestinians, having loved ones in prison is not the exception: it is something which has affected every Palestinian family. 800,000 Palestinians have been arrested by Israeli forces since 1967. 5224 remain incarcerated today, including administrative, sick, female and children detainees. [bz]

Cut off from the world, Gazans consumed by poverty

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 00:00
Noah Browning and Nidal al-Mughrabi - Yahoo News "Living on U.N. handouts of rice, flour, canned meat and sunflower oil, with limited access to proper health care or clean water, families like the Mustafas - seemingly permanent refugees from ancestral lands now part of Israel - have no money, no jobs and no hope." ca

In Israel, not all citizens are created equal: On selective prosecution

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 00:00
Lisa Goldman - +972 "In Israel there is something called the Prevention of Infiltration Law, which prohibits citizens from traveling to a list of so-called “enemy states.” The law is little known and almost never enforced...This week, a 24 year-old Palestinian-Arab citizen of Israel named Majd Kayyal was accused of breaking the same law. Like me, Kayyal traveled to Beirut. He attended a journalism conference sponsored by As-Safir, a veteran Lebanese publication for which he is a contributing writer. But unlike me..." ca

Marwan Barghouthi; The Key To War And Peace

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 00:00
Saed Bannoura - IMEMC "It also said that the case of Barghouthi, the secretary-general of the Fateh movement, an elected legislator, has placed Israel in an international legal dilemma, since his abduction and imprisonment is illegitimate, and part of Israel’s war on late President, Yasser Arafat." ca

UN Official Pledges to Lift the Siege on Gaza

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 00:00
Chris Carlson - IMEMC "Krahenbuhl said, according to the Middle East Monitor, that all United Nations human rights reports, human rights organisations` reports and journalistic reports could not reflect the continuous suffering and isolation of the Palestinian refugees in the Gaza Strip." ca

The final fizzling of negotiations

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 00:00
The Economist - "FORMALLY the Israelis and Palestinians are still meeting, albeit fitfully. But in reality they are turning their backs on each other, thinking up their next strategies as if the talks had already ceased." ca

Why does this man want to end the U.S.-Israel special relationship?

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 00:00
Chemi Shalev - Haaretz "In a no-holds barred conversation, Haaretz’s Chemi Shalev talks at length with Prof. Stephen Walt, coauthor of the notorious `Israel Lobby,` about accusations of anti-Semitism and U.S. foreign policy." ca

International treaties and the prospects for justice for Palestinians

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 00:00
Ata Hindy - Ma`an News Agency "If the PLO wanted to provide justice and accountability, the Palestinians should enjoy greater access to justice and accountability at the international level, including through accession to those instruments providing complaint mechanisms to these treaties. This would be complemented by a robust international legal strategy." ca

Why Israeli officials are chuckling: The `stable` West Bank dilemma

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 00:00
Ramzy Baroud Ma`an News Agency - "In a recent interview with The Economist, Elkin used the familiar tone of being conceited and oblivious to such notions as international or human rights, and reaffirmed his rejection of a Palestinian state." ca

Thousands march across West Bank and Gaza to mark Prisoners Day

Fri, 04/18/2014 - 00:00
Ma`an News Agency - " Large demonstrations took place in Hebron, Gaza City, Jenin, Nablus, and Ramallah to mark the day of solidarity with the more than 5,000 Palestinian prisoners currently being held in Israeli prisons. The demonstrations took place amid a major row with Israel over its failure to release a batch of prisoners held for more than twenty years as previously agreed upon as a part of ongoing peace negotiations." ca

Father of young woman killed by soldiers petitions High Court to oblige MAG to handle case promptly

Tue, 04/15/2014 - 00:00
B’Tselem - "Munir al-Hanash, whose daughter Lubna was shot and killed by soldiers on 23 January 2013 near al-‘Arrub refugee camp, filed a petition today to Israel’s High Court of Justice together with Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem, demanding that the court oblige Military Advocate General Maj. Gen. Danny Efroni to decide whether to indict the soldiers who killed his daughter or close the case" [ry]

On using `emergency measures` against `price tag` vandals

Tue, 04/15/2014 - 00:00
Noam Sheizaf - +972 - The Israeli defense minister has raised the idea of using administrative detention against violent settlers. But there are more interests at play than meets the eye [ry]

Army Surrounds Ithna Town Near Hebron

Tue, 04/15/2014 - 00:00
Saed Bannoura - IMEMC & Agencies - "The invasion started after an Israeli settler was shot and killed, and three others were injured, apparently by Palestinian fire. Local sources told the Ma`an News Agency that dozens of soldiers invaded the town, and started breaking into homes, stores and various buildings, and interrogated dozens of Palestinians. No arrests were reported until the time of this report" [ry]

Tension around al-Aqsa Mosque ahead of Jewish Passover

Tue, 04/15/2014 - 00:00
Ma`an News Agency - "Israeli forces have deployed heavily at all gates of the al-Aqsa Mosque compound since early Monday imposing strict restrictions on the entry of Muslim worshipers to the compound" [ry]

Palm Sunday march: ‘Palestine wants justice’

Tue, 04/15/2014 - 00:00
AIC - “Last week, leaders of Jerusalem’s Christian community released a statement denouncing denial of access to holy sites: ‘The mobility of worshipers inside the Old City of Jerusalem gets restricted, and checkpoints are put at the gates and in the alleys -- thus preventing the worshipers from free access to the Via Dolorosa, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and the vicinity of the Christian Quarter. […] The measures taken by the occupying power have been escalating in recent years, and are meant to deny Christian and Muslim presence in East Jerusalem’” [ry]