Mahmoud Abbas

PA Calls Elections, Chief Negotiator Erekat Resigns

02/13/2011

JERUSALEM (JTA) -- The Palestinian Authority said it will hold elections by September in what is being seen as a response to the political upheaval in Egypt.

The decision to have parliamentary and presidential elections was announced Saturday in the West Bank city of Ramallah. It followed a meeting of the executive committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization, which is led by PA President Mahmoud Abbas and oversees the Palestinian Authority.

Hamas rejected the announcement and said it would not participate in the elections.

New Middle East task forces, familiar faces, same old problems

 Over at Politico. Laura Rozen is reporting that the Obama administration has created two task forces to seek new ideas about how to get beyond the current stalemate in Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

Palestinians Gain Ground in PR, Diplomatic War

12/22/2010
JTA

NEW YORK (JTA) -- In the long-running Palestinian-Israeli conflict, score some recent victories for the Palestinians.

It’s not that Israel has given an inch in the territorial dispute over the West Bank, or that the Palestinians in Gaza have achieved new military victories against the Israelis, despite increased rocket and mortar fire from the coastal strip in recent weeks.

Rather, the Palestinians have scored a series of diplomatic and public-relations successes against a Jewish state weakened by fraying relationships and a declining reputation internationally.

Media Watch: Who Is A ‘Real Jew?’

How much your heart breaks when you argue says a lot.

12/21/2010
Associate Editor

Pinocchio wanted to be “a real boy.” When he followed Lampwick to Pleasure Island and began smoking cigars, shooting pool and living the crude life until growing donkey ears and braying, was Pinocchio closer to being a real boy or a real donkey? At least Pinocchio had the decency to feel ashamed.

New York Times columnist Roger Cohen .

Report: Talks Stymied Over Israel’s ‘Security Concept’

12/21/2010

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Israeli-Palestinian talks were reportedly at an impasse over Israel's insistence on a continued military presence when a dispute over settlements ended them.

Newsweek, quoting negotiators from each side, reported Monday that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu insisted that the Palestinians accept Israel's "security concept" before discussing any other topic.

WaPo: PA taking "extreme steps" against radical imams

 It's a cliché in pro-Israel circles that the Palestinian Authority is doing nothing to curb anti-Israel, anti-Semitic incitement, but a story by the always-excellent Janine Zacharia in today's Washington Post tells a more nuanced story.

Argentina Joins Brazil in Recognizing Palestinian State

12/06/2010

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (JTA) -- Argentina has recognized a Palestinian state within the 1967 borders, according to a note sent from President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner to Mahmoud Abbas.

Kirchner on Monday sent the note to Abbas, the Palestinian Authority president, announcing that her government recognizes Palestine as a free and independent state within 1967 borders and according to what the parties determined during the negotiation process.

Palestinian Unilateral Statehood Gambit Puts Israel Against Wall

10/27/2010
JTA

JERUSALEM (JTA) – With talks at a stalemate and no agreement from the Israelis to reinstate a settlement freeze, the Palestinians are playing a new card: an end game to statehood through an appeal to the international community.

The card hasn’t actually been played, but the mere threat that the Palestinians would push for international recognition of a state from the United Nations has been enough to push the Israeli government to reconsider options to return to the negotiating table.

Netanyahu Offers Settlement Freeze for Recognition as a Jewish State

10/12/2010

JERUSALEM (JTA) -- Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he would reinstate a West Bank construction freeze if the Palestinians recognize Israel as a Jewish state.

Netanyahu made the offer Monday in a wide-ranging speech at the opening of the Knesset's winter session.

Notes on a Dysfunctional Peace Process

 What a crazy, dysfunctional peace process.

Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas says Palestinian statehood is his number one goal, but he apparently doesn't want it bad enough to accept some kind of compromise on a settlement moratorium that will allow talks – the only route to his goal- to continue.

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