December 7, 2012 |
RAFAH, Gaza Strip - Exiled Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal set foot in the Gaza Strip for the first time Friday, emerging from the Egyptian border with his hand over his heart and telling jubilant supporters that his visit marked a new era in the pursuit of Palestinian independence. Though Meshaal has led the Islamist militant group since 2004, traveling to its Gaza-based home was unthinkable just a month ago because of fear that Israel might assassinate him as it did his two predecessors.
December 6, 2012
Re "Complaints pour in to Israel," Dec. 4 Israel's European allies are up in arms about a settlement project and say that this is an impediment to the peace process. What peace process? With which Arab entity? Brokered by whom? Does the act of building homes really overshadow the murderous acts committed daily by Syria against its own Arab population, unending rocket attacks by Hamas on Israel, the use of Palestinian children as human shields by terrorists and the attempted creation of nuclear weapons by Iran?
December 5, 2012 |
JERUSALEM - Israel took another step Wednesday toward developing a highly sensitive plot of West Bank land, submitting construction plans for nearly 3,400 units of new Jewish housing on the outskirts of Jerusalem. The project, known as E-1, has drawn fierce criticism from the United States, United Nations and European nations which fear it might severely cripple efforts to create a viable, contiguous Palestinian state. E-1, which sits on more than four square miles of rolling hills near the West Bank settlement of Maale Adumim, would partially divide the northern and southern areas of the West Bank and isolate the Arab neighborhoods of East Jerusalem, where Palestinians hope to put the capital of their state.
December 4, 2012
When Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas announced that he would seek recognition from the United Nations for a Palestinian state, Israel complained that Abbas should have pursued that objective in face-to-face peace negotiations and warned of grave consequences, threatening to expand settlements or even to "cancel" the peace process altogether. Now that the General Assembly has upgraded the Palestinians' status - from "observer entity" to "nonmember state" - the Israelis are proceeding in a dangerous and self-defeating way. Part of the price the Palestinians will pay can be measured in dollars and cents.
December 3, 2012 |
JERUSALEM - Israel is facing an onslaught of criticism from European allies over its decision to revive a controversial West Bank settlement project known as E-1, which critics say could destroy efforts to create a Palestinian state. The governments of Britain, France, Spain, Sweden and Denmark called their Israeli ambassadors in for meetings Monday to formally complain about the project, located on the outskirts of Jerusalem. White House spokesman Jay Carney said the U.S., which has opposed the project for nearly 20 years, is urging "Israeli leaders to reconsider these actions.
December 2, 2012 |
JERUSALEM -- Israel said Sunday it would withhold more than $100 million in tax revenue this month from the cash-strapped Palestinian Authority, the latest reaction to last week's U.N. vote recognizing the Palestinian territories as a "nonmember observer state. " Israeli Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz said he would use the money to repay part of an outstanding Palestinian debt -- estimated to be about $180 million -- to Israel's electricity company for power supplied to parts of the West Bank.
November 30, 2012 |
JERUSALEM - Following a landmark United Nations vote upgrading the status of the Palestinian territories to become a “nonmember observer state” in the international body, Israel said Friday it would construct an additional 3,000 units of Jewish housing in the West Bank. The government is also moving forward with preliminary planning for a controversial development on the outskirts of Jerusalem that U.S. officials have opposed for decades, according to a government official, who requested anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly about the issue.
November 29, 2012 |
RAMALLAH, West Bank -- Keeping hopes high and expectations low is a strategy Palestinians have used for decades to get through the ups and downs of their statehood campaign. Such sentiments were on full display here Thursday. As Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas prepared for a landmark United Nations vote on whether to upgrade the status of Palestinian territories from “entity” to “state,” thousands of people gathered in Ramallah and other West Bank cities to celebrate what is expected to be a rare diplomatic victory.
November 27, 2012
Re "Renew the peace process? Not now," Opinion, Nov. 25 Chuck Freilich is correct that the prospects for peace between Israel and the Palestinians are small. But in his entire piece he neglects to mention the root cause of the problem: the Israeli occupation and colonization of the West Bank and its blockade of the Gaza Strip. Instead of facing the facts on the ground, Freilich blames Palestinian ideology. He misses Israeli ideology that says Israel has rights to all the land between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River.
November 24, 2012 |
RAMALLAH, West Bank - The Palestinian Authority announced Saturday that it would exhume the body of Yasser Arafat within days in a bid to determine the cause of his death eight years ago. Many Palestinians believe he was poisoned by Israel. Arafat, 75, died in a French military hospital near Paris on Nov. 11, 2004, after his health deteriorated suddenly during an Israeli military siege of his Ramallah headquarters. French hospital reports attributed his death to a massive brain hemorrhage, but gave no details on what caused a related blood condition called disseminated intravascular coagulation, fueling Palestinian suspicion of an Israeli role.