The Israeli government is understandably upset with Washington’s decision to deal with the newly announced unity government formed by the Palestinian Authority and Hamas. The anger and frustration is based on Jerusalem’s leaders being taken by surprise by the move and because the U.S. could have and should have based its acceptance on Hamas reforming itself.
Hamas crackdown, Saudi pressure fuel hopes as Obama calls on Israel to make ‘difficult choices.’
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The chances that U.S.-brokered Israeli-Palestinian peace talks will continue beyond next month’s deadline appeared to improve this week, after an Egyptian court banned the activities of Hamas and seized its assets. At the same time, a Saudi billionaire flew to Ramallah to encourage Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to make peace.
Will additional UN moves do more damage than good for the PA president?
Tel Aviv — For months the Palestinian Authority rode a wave of international anticipation over its bid for United Nations statehood recognition and the possibility of domestic protest. The mere mention of “September,” the timing of the UN General Assembly, was enough to make Israeli politicians uncomfortable.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said he will never recognize a Jewish state and that capturing Gilad Shalit was a "good thing."
Abbas made the remarks in an Oct. 23 interview on the Egyptian television channel Dream 2. A transcript of the interview was published in an Oct. 31 report by MEMRI, the Middle East Media Research Institute.
Top White House officials briefed Jewish community leaders about a Quartet statement urging Israelis and Palestinians to return to talks with no preconditions, a key Israeli demand.
"The Quartet reiterated its urgent appeal to the parties to overcome the current obstacles and resume direct bilateral Israeli-Palestinian negotiations without delay or preconditions," said a statement released Friday evening by the grouping of the United States, Russia, the United Nations and the European Union that guides Middle East peace talks.
By ramping up the incendiary rhetoric with accusations of Israeli racism, ethnic cleansing, targeted assassinations, waging a war of aggression, apartheid and threatening Islamic holy places, Mahmoud Abbas was fanning the flames of a Third Intifada he claims he doesn't want.
Mahmoud Abbas outlined a vision for an independent Palestine that hewed to the two-state formula but also revived rhetoric that hearkened back to an era of Palestinian belligerence.
Shortly after concluding his speech to the U.N. General Assembly on Friday, the Palestinian Authority president was followed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who laid out a very different vision of the two-state solution that underscored the depth of the gulf between the two leaders.