RAMALLAH, West Bank (JTA) -- Clouds of tear gas hovered over hundreds of rioting Palestinian youths on the road to Jerusalem, where demonstrations marking the anniversary of Israel’s founding 63 years ago turned violent.
“I want a third intifada," said Ala Barghouti, a 21-year-old accounting student, his nostrils stuffed with tissues to keep out the sting of the tear gas. "I hope things do escalate today. A third intifada will help move the Palestinian Authority to improve our political situation.
White House Spokesman Jay Carney on Monday defended Israel's use of force against hundreds of Palestinians who tried to cross the borders from Lebanaon, Syria and Gaza, while calling on neighboring countries to prevent future incidents.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Leaders of both parties in the U.S. House of Representatives are circulating a resolution calling for sanctions against the Palestinian Authority if it pursues statehood recognition and remains reconciled with Hamas.
ROME (JTA) -- Italy will never recognize a unilateral declaration of a Palestinian state, Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi said.
Berlusconi at a celebration of Israel's 63rd birthday praised the Jewish state as the only democracy in the Middle East. He was the guest of honor Wednesday at an Israeli Independence Day reception hosted by Israeli Ambassador Gideon Meir.
"No, absolutely not," he was quoted as telling reporters when asked whether Italy would recognize a unilaterally declared Palestinian state.
ROME (JTA) -- Pope Benedict XVI praised the development of Catholic-Jewish relations over the past four decades and renewed commitment to dialogue.
"What has happened in these forty years must be seen as a great gift from the Lord and a reason for heartfelt gratitude towards the One who guides our steps with his infinite and eternal wisdom," he told a senior delegation from B'nai B'rith international at an audience Wednesday at the Vatican.