INTERNATIONAL PULSE

Period: April 2014
 

ISRAEL


 
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HOLY FIRE CEREMONY DRAWS THOUSANDS IN JERUSALEM
Christian pilgrims hold candles at the church of the Holy Sepulcher, traditionally believed to be the burial site of Jesus Christ, during the ceremony of the Holy Fire in Jerusalem's Old City, Saturday, April 19, 2014. The "holy fire" was passed among worshippers outside the Church and then taken to the Church of the Nativity in the West Bank town of Bethlehem, where tradition holds Jesus was born, and from there to other Christian communities in Israel and the West Bank. (AP Photo - Dan Balilty)
By IAN DEITCH From Associated Press - April 19, 2014 4:01 PM EST
JERUSALEM (AP) — The dark hall inside Christianity's holiest shrine was illuminated with the flames from thousands of candles on Saturday as worshippers participated in the holy fire ceremony, a momentous spiritual event in Orthodox Easter rites.
Christians believe Jesus was crucified, buried and resurrected at the site where the Church of the Holy Sepulcher now stands in the Old City of Jerusalem. While the source of the holy fire is a closely guarded secret, believers say the flame appears spontaneously from his tomb on the day before Easter to show Jesus has not forgotten his followers.
The ritual dates back at least 1,200 years.
Thousands of Christians waited outside the church for it to open Saturday morning. Custody of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher is shared by a number of denominations that jealously guard their responsibilities under a fragile network of agreements hammered out over the last millennia. In accordance with tradition, the church's doors were unlocked by a member of a Muslim family, who for centuries has been the keeper of the ancient key that is passed on within the family from generation to generation.
Once inside, clergymen from the various Orthodox denominations in robes and hoods jostled for space with local worshippers and pilgrims from around the world.
Top Orthodox clergymen descended into the small chamber marking the site of Jesus' tomb as worshippers eagerly waited in the dim church clutching bundles of unlit candles and torches.
After a while, candles emerged lit with "holy fire" — said to have been lit by a miracle as a message to the faithful from heaven.
Bells rang as worshippers rushed to use the flames to ignite their own candles.
In mere seconds, the bursts of light spread throughout the cavernous church as flames jumped from one candle to another. Clouds of smoke wafted through the crammed hall as flashes from cameras and mobile phones documented what is for many, the spiritual event of a lifetime.
http://www.fox19.com/story/25289067/holy-fire-ceremony-draws-thousands-in-jerusalem

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IS THE FAMOUS NEW ISRAELI SUPREME COURT TO BE PUT TO WORK TO CONVICT ISRAELIS?
Al Jazeera 2014-03-29 For the first time Israel's Supreme Court is set to consider evidence on April 2 that senior Israeli political and military officials committed war crimes in relation to major military operations in Gaza and Lebanon. Former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and his Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, the current justice minister, are among the high-level figures accused of breaking the laws of war when they launched attacks on Lebanon in 2006, and on Gaza in the winter of 2008-09. The allegations have been levelled by Marwan Dalal, the only Israeli lawyer to have served as a senior prosecutor in one of the international.
For the first time Israel's Supreme Court is set to consider evidence on April 2 that senior Israeli political and military officials committed war crimes in relation to...
The People's Voice 2014-04-01
Father of Palestinian youth killed by soldiers in Budrus petitions High Court to end delay in investigation (B'Tselem - The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories)
Ahmad 'Awad, whose son Samir was shot and killed by soldiers near the Separation Barrier in the West Bank village of Budrus, Israel's High Court of Justice together with...
noodls 2014-03-30
Israeli Crimes Go Unpunished
They're longstanding. They continue daily. The Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) highlights them. It did so in its 2013 annual report. PCHR Director Raji Sourani...
The People's Voice 2014-03-30 http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/2014/03/israel-high-court-consider-war-
crimes-case-201432864717613233.html

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THE WORLD COMMUNITY WANTS 12 ISRAELIS PROSECUTED FOR WAR CRIMES
ISRAELI GOVERNMENT STATES THEY CANNOT PROSECUTE THEIR OWN RETIRED LEADERS DUE TO INADEQUATE EVIDENCE ANOTHER OBJECTION BY ISRAELIS IS THE FACT THAT PALESTINE IS NOT A COUNTRY
NO RULE OF LAW??
INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT REFUSES TO PROSECUTE ISRAELI WAR CRIMINALS
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vLRMI-ckSSE
http://article.wn.com/view/2014/03/30/Israel_to_consider_war_crimes_case/
Page has a list of links to VIDEO commentaries.

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THOUSANDS OF JERUSALEM ARABS WITHOUT WATER
By JON GERBERG From Associated Press April 07, 2014 1:30 PM EST JERUSALEM (AP) — Tens of thousands of Palestinians living in east Jerusalem have been without running water for more than a month, victims of a decrepit and overwhelmed infrastructure and caught in a legal no-man's land caused by the divisions of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
The residents of the Shuafat refugee camp are technically part of the Jerusalem municipality. But they live outside the massive West Bank separation barrier that Israel has built. So Israeli services are sparse, yet Palestinian authorities are barred from operating there or developing the water system.
The local Israeli water authority says the existing system of pipes cannot handle the rapid population growth of the area and it is scrambling to solve the problem. Last week, the Israeli Supreme Court gave officials 60 days to find a solution.
But with the scorching summer season approaching, residents are growing increasingly desperate. Basic tasks like brushing teeth are a challenge. Showers have become a luxury. Families often send their clothes to relatives elsewhere in the city to wash them.
"Sixty days — that's a lot of time for us," said Hani Taha, a local butcher. "There will be chaos here." Continued:
http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/thousands-jerusalem-arabs-water-23225833

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PEACE TALKS ON DEATH BED AS PALESTINIANS ISSUE FRESH DEMANDS
Monday, April 07, 2014 | Israel Today Staff - Just days after all but quitting the “Oslo” peace process by unilaterally approaching the United Nations for recognition, the Palestinian Authority over the weekend issued fresh demands of Israel that effectively killed the current round of negotiations.
The current US-brokered negotiations are scheduled to last until April 29, by which point the Americans had hoped to have a framework agreement in place. But Palestinian leaders told Palestinian media that for the talks to extend even one day beyond that deadline, Israel must meet new conditions.
Just days after all but quitting the “Oslo” peace process by unilaterally approaching the United Nations for recognition, the Palestinian Authority over the weekend issued fresh demands of Israel that effectively killed the current round of negotiations. The current US-brokered negotiations are scheduled to last until April 29, by which point the Americans had hoped to have a framework agreement in place. But Palestinian leaders told Palestinian media that for the talks to extend even one day beyond that deadline, Israel must meet new conditions.
According to the new demands, Israel must immediately: Recognize the eastern half of Jerusalem as the capital of “Palestine”; Release senior jailed terrorist leaders; Lift all embargoes against Hamas-ruled Gaza;
Allow the return of the terrorists who took over and desecrated Bethlehem’s Church of the Nativity in 2002;
Halt all building of new Jewish homes in parts of Jerusalem claimed by the Palestinians (ie. Gilo, French Hill, Pisgat Zeev); and Stop entering Palestinian Authority-controlled areas to arrest wanted terrorists.
These demands come just day after Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas signed 15 treaties in a new effort to gain official recognition for Palestinian sovereignty from the international community.
Israeli Justice Minister and chief negotiator Tzipi Livni insisted that in so doing, the Palestinian Authority had violated its primary commitment in the peace process by seeking recognition outside of a bilateral agreement.
http://www.israeltoday.co.il/NewsItem/tabid/178/nid/24548/Default.aspx?hp=article_title

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PALESTINIANS INVOKE JESUS IN NATIONALIST CAMPAIGN
Wednesday, February 05, 2014 | Israel Today Staff - A group of Palestinian Arab activists denying Israel's right to control over the Jordan Valley are invoking the teachings of Jesus by operating under the banner "Salt of the Earth."
It is unclear whether or not the activists are primarily Christians, but their reference to Jesus' Sermon on the Mount is undeniable, nor is it the first time that Palestinians, both Christians and Muslims, have conscripted the Messiah into their nationalist campaign.
Last Friday, the group quietly moved into the small abandoned Jordan Valley village of Ein Hijleh just north of the Dead Sea. The ruins of Ein Hijleh are adjacent to a still-active Christian monastery of the same name.
Group organizers speculate that the village was populated up until Israel seized control of the area following the Six Day War in 1967, because such a narrative would fit nicely with their agenda.
Salt of the Earth was established, according to organizers, to oppose the current peace proposals put forward by both Israel and the US under which the Jewish state would retain at least security control over the Jordan Valley.
The group is also diametrically opposed to recognizing Israel as a Jewish state, another hint at the Replacement Theology that permeates much of Palestinian society. In other words, the Palestinians, and in particular Palestinian Christians, are the only true "salt of the earth" in this region.
For now the Israeli army is more or less ignoring the group. The army has surrounded the area and is preventing additional activists from entering Ein Hijleh, but is not moving to evacuate those already encamped at the site.
http://www.israeltoday.co.il/NewsItem/tabid/178/nid/24416/Default.aspx?article=related_stories

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NETANYAHU CUTS RELATIONS WITH PALESTINE, CAN IT SURVIVE?
"...Netanyahu had redefined the word "lame," http://www.roitov.com/articles/cut.htm
ISRAELI MINISTERS CUT OFF MEETINGS WITH PALESTINIANS
By Calev Ben-David and Jonathan Ferziger Apr 9, 2014 1:06 PM MT - U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry changed his travel plans today to squeeze in visit to Israel and the West Bank.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered cabinet ministers to stop meeting with their Palestinian counterparts, a government official said, hours after the U.S. blamed Israel for the breakdown of peace talks.
Israeli government officials have been told to refrain from meeting their Palestinian counterparts because the Palestinians violated commitments made under the talks, the official said. Israel also is considering a proposal to hold back three-quarters of the $100 million in taxes it collects monthly on behalf of the Palestinian Authority, arguing the money supports terrorism, according to the official.
Yesterday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said the announcement of 708 new Jewish homes in east Jerusalem had derailed eight months of Mideast peace talks. Testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, he said the sides were closer to resolving differences over a delayed Israeli release of Palestinian prisoners when “700 settlement units were announced in Jerusalem and, poof, that was sort of the moment.”
While Kerry said that both sides took “unhelpful actions,” some Israeli officials fumed at his suggestion that Israel’s April 1 announcement of settlement construction caused the talks to collapse.
‘Never Apologize’
“Israel will never apologize for building in Jerusalem,” Economy Minister Naftali Bennett, whose Jewish Home party is the third-biggest faction in Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s ruling coalition, said in a Facebook post. “Construction in Jerusalem is no ‘poof,’ construction in Jerusalem is Zionism,” said Bennett, whose pro-settlement faction controls the Housing Ministry and opposes any peace deal that creates a Palestinian state. [...]
The breakdown came as the sides approached the April 29 expiration of the nine months of negotiations they consented to, leaving Kerry’s efforts to extend his peace mission in tatters. His original aspiration when he brought Israelis and Palestinians back to the negotiating table in July after almost three years was to reach a final accord by the end of this month.
Kerry met in Washington today with Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman, who said last week that “Israel has done all that it can to reach an agreement with the Palestinians, and the ball is now in their court.” Whole Story
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-04-08/israel-acts-derailed-palestinian-peace-talks-kerry-says.html

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ISRAEL ATTACKED FROM ERITREA
Eritrean Emblem Mafia State
Israel is in troubles. Iran has successfully deactivated the artificial crisis surrounding its legitimate nuclear program. The Syrian War against mercenaries supported mainly by Western regimes is over with Bashar al-Assad remaining in power. The USA enforced the renewal of talks with Palestine. Israel's business of war is crumbling.
In despair, Netanyahu called the spirits of Stalin, Hitler, Napoleon, Churchill and Genghis Khan, and consulted the elders. "Me too, me too!" Roosevelt shouted and added "Why do you bother us? Start a war." "Why they never call me?" Evo Morales cried from behind the door.
"That's true! Why didn't I think of that before?" Netanyahu said to Lieutenant General Gantz who looked with disbelief at the scene. Who is Morales? Zion was getting weird.
"Bibi, I can't attack. Iran and Syria are holding talks with the West. We have peace agreements with Jordan and Egypt. We are talking with the Palestinians. Lebanon and Hezbollah are too strong. If we attack them, they will blow up the entire gas basin."
"Who made you an officer? Be a creative, assertive, proactive beast! We will attack Iran and Palestine!"
"Milord Prime Minister, I can’t. If we bomb Tehran they will erase us."
"Are you General al-Sisi's brother? A brave Zionist general fulfils orders without questioning. Attack Iran and Palestine in a creative way. Use our base in Eritrea."
"Yes milord, but neither Iran nor Palestine is there."
"They don’t need to be there. Do you want our soldiers to get hurt?" http://www.roitov.com/articles/redsea.htm

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CHRISTIAN-ZIONISTS PROBLEM - KHAZAR DNA [VIDEO]
Posted By: NaturalWisdom - 24-Apr-2014 14:07:48 - Christian-Zionists Problem - Khazar DNA
http://www.batr.org/terror/042114.html
It is crucial to understand that Zionist (Khazarian Jews) Historical Claim to Israel is Unfounded. The Cabala, their most revered book, is a hoax. Similarly, as Alfred Lillienthal explained in [a] key 1953 essay, their claim to Israel is yet another ruse. Zionism and the NWO are partly a recrudescence of Khazar imperialism...
WHY Evangelists and khazars hate this video. Part I KHAZARS
Khaadimone Fakename - Mar 15, 2010
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jgpu_4LiKLA
DNA reveals ashkenazi "Jews" are not Descendants of Abraham but of King Bulan and the Khazars
Martin Luther - Apr 21, 2013 - http://youtu.be/vmSVpsoHM9w
Mr. Texe Marrs reports on the definitive DNA study by Dr. Eran Elhaik of the prestigious Johns Hopkins Medical University, reported in the Oxford Press and in The Journal of Molecular Biology and Evolution. Dr. Elhaik reports that their DNA proves that today's "Jews" are not of Israelite blood. Instead the "Jews" originated in Khazaria, where the pagan Turkic clans in that nation converted to Judaism in the eighth century.
http://www.fantompowa.info/13th%20Tribe.pdf
http://www.batr.org/terror/042114.html
KHAZAR DNA & THE GREAT SERPENT
Texe Marrs - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=drErjw5De0o

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ISRAEL HALTS PEACE TALKS WITH PALESTINIANS AGAIN??
By JOSEF FEDERMAN - From Associated Press - April 24, 2014 2:49 PM EST
JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel broke off Mideast peace talks and brought the U.S.-brokered process to the brink of collapse Thursday, protesting a reconciliation agreement between the Western-backed Palestinian Authority and the militant group Hamas, the Jewish state's sworn enemy.
Israel's Security Cabinet made the decision during a marathon emergency meeting convened to discuss the new Palestinian deal. The rival Palestinian factions Hamas and Fatah announced the reconciliation plan Wednesday, meant to end a seven-year rift.
Israel objects to any participation in Palestinian politics by Hamas, which has killed hundreds of Israelis in suicide bombings and other attacks over the past two decades.
In a statement issued by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office, the government said it would not hold negotiations with a government "backed by Hamas."
"Instead of choosing peace, Abu Mazen formed an alliance with a murderous terrorist organization that calls for the destruction of Israel," the statement said, referring to a name Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is also known by.
The statement said Israel also would respond to Abbas' recent decision to join 15 international conventions "with a series of steps," language that typically refers to financial sanctions against the Palestinians. Continued:
http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/israel-halts-peace-talks-palestinians-23459716

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US UNWILLING TO GIVE UP MIDEAST PEACE PROCESS YET
WASHINGTON April 24, 2014 (AP) By LARA JAKES AP National Security Writer - Secretary of State John Kerry said Thursday that the U.S. isn't ready to write off Mideast peace negotiations, even after Israel broke off talks with Palestinian leaders who are trying to create a coalition government with the militant group Hamas.
"There is always a way forward," Kerry told reporters in brief remarks at the State Department.
However, Kerry said Israeli and Palestinian leaders need to make necessary compromises so that the nine months of negotiations can continue after an April 29 deadline. If they won't, he said, peace "becomes very elusive."
"We will never give up our hope or our commitment for the possibilities for peace," he said. "We believe it is the only way to go. But right now, obviously, it's at a very difficult point and the leaders themselves have to make decisions. It's up to them." Continued: http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/wireStory/us-unwilling-give-mideast-peace-process-23458104

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SCHEDULE:VISIT OF POPE FRANCIS TO ISRAEL 25-26 MAY 2014
April 3, 2014 - Information for Foreign Journalists ahead of the Visit of Pope Francis to Israel 25-26 May 2014
Welcome! We at the Government Press Office (GPO) wish to extend our warm greetings and will do all that we can to facilitate your visit and make it enjoyable and efficient. Please note the following information:...
4. Schedule
Please note:
A. The State of Israel and the GPO are not responsible for Pope Francis' visit to the Kingdom of Jordan and the Palestinian Authority.
B. The arrival ceremony at Ben Gurion International Airport on May 25 is the only event in Israel that will be open for coverage (details will be issued separately). All other events will be pool coverage only.
Saturday, May 24, 2014
13:00 – Arrival at Queen Alia International Airport in Amman
13:45 – Arrival Ceremony in the al-Husseini Royal Palace in Amman
Courtesy visit to their Majesties the King and Queen of Jordan 14:20 – Meeting with the authorities of the Kingdom of Jordan. Discourse of the Holy Father
16:00 – Holy Mass at the International Stadium in Amman. Homily of the Holy Father
19:00 – Visit to the baptismal site at Bethany beyond the Jordan
Sunday, May 25, 2014
08:30 – Departure by helicopter from Queen Alia Internal Airport in Amman for Bethlehem
09:30 – Arrival ceremony at the Presidential Palace in Bethlehem Courtesy visit to the Chairman of the Palestinian Authority
10:00 – Meeting with the Palestinian Authority. Discourse of the Holy Father
11:00 – Holy Mass in Manger Square in Bethlehem. Homily of the Holy Father Regina Coeli prayer. Allocution of the Holy Father
15:00 – Private visit to the Grotto of the Nativity in Bethlehem
Continued: http://www.imra.org.il/story.php3?id=63560

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FORMER PRESIDENT JIMMY CARTER JOINS POLLARD RELEASE BANDWAGON
By Gil Hoffman - The Jerusalem Post - April 6, 2014 - Former US president Jimmy Carter became the most unlikely top American official yet to endorse the release of Israeli agent Jonathan Pollard Sunday.
Carter, who is known as a fierce critic of Israel, said he supported current US president Barack Obama releasing Pollard as part of a diplomatic agreement that US Secretary of State John Kerry is trying to broker between Israel and the Palestinians. As a gesture to Israel, Kerry has offered to bring about Pollard's release before Passover.
“If the Israelis would agree to accept John Kerry’s proposal, if Pollard was released, I would say yes [to supporting freedom for Pollard],” the former president told the website Politico. “But I would make it an absolute swap and a certain thing, not just as a factor.”
Carter joined a growing list of top current and former American dignitaries calling for Pollard's release that includes former secretaries of state Gerorge Schultz and Henry Kissinger, three former heads of the Central Intelligence Agency, former National Security Adviser Robert McFarlane, and former US deputy defense secretary Lawrence Korb. Continued: http://www.jpost.com/Diplomacy-and-Politics/Carter-joins-Pollard-release-bandwagon-347687

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ARAB LEAGUE REJECTS PUTTING PRESSURE ON ABBAS
CAIRO, April 7, 2014 (WAFA - PLO news agency) – The League of Arab States said, in a statement Monday, that it rejects putting pressures on President Mahmoud Abbas to foil Palestinian attempts to accede to international organizations as well as to extend the negotiations.
Deputy Secretary General of the League of Arab States, Ahmad Bin Helli, said that such pressures should be exerted on Israel, since it the party that does not meet its obligations towards the peace process.
He said President Abbas called for holding an emergency meeting for the Arab ministers of foreign affairs, in his presence, to brief them on the latest developments on peace talks.
Bin Helli further noted that Abbas will present to the Arab ministers a comprehensive explanation on the recent political developments and the options in hand, in addition to how the Palestinian leadership is planning to act in light of the current political impasse following deadlock in peace talks. Continued:
http://english.wafa.ps/index.php?action=detail&id=24827

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WHAT'S BEHIND ABBA'S RENEWED COURTSHIP OF HAMAS?
by Khaled Abu Toameh - April 8, 2014 at 5:00 am - For Abbas, the issue of reconciliation with Hamas is yet another legitimate weapon to scare the Israelis and the US into submitting to his demands and preconditions. It now remains to be seen whether the US Administration will take the bait.
Now that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has succeeded in surprising the US and Israel with his decision to apply for Palestinian membership in 15 international institutions and treaties, he seems to be preparing another surprise for the Americans and Israelis: a unity agreement with Hamas.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh in Gaza, in February 2007, before Hamas seized total control of Gaza. (Image source: MaanImages)
Earlier this week, Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh was also surprised to receive a phone call from Azzam al-Ahmed, a close advisor to Abbas.
The purpose of the phone call was to request permission from Haniyeh for a visit from senior Fatah officials to the Gaza Strip to discuss unity and reconciliation between the two rival parties.
Haniyeh's office replied that he would welcome a visit to the Gaza Strip "out of keenness for unity and in order to protect the national interests of the Palestinians."
Abbas's renewed effort to join forces with Hamas came even as U.S. envoy Martin Indyk was busy trying to prevent the breakdown of the Israeli-Palestinian talks in wake of Abbas's surprise decision to apply for membership in international organizations and conventions. Continued:
http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/4253/abbas-hamas-reconciliation

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FATAH LEADER: ISRAELI SANCTIONS WILL LEAD TO COLLAPSE OF PA
04.09.2014 22:48 - RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Fatah central committee member Azzam al-Ahmad warned on Wednesday that Israeli sanctions will lead to the dismantling of the Palestinian Authority.
Al-Ahmad told Ma'an that the PA will not announce its dismantling outright, but stressed that Israeli actions will "lead to its collapse."
Al-Ahmad's comments come amid a near breakdown in peace talks between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization, after Israel refused to release a group of Palestinian prisoners as previously agreed upon if the Palestinians refused to extend talk beyond the deadline at the end of April.
After Palestinian leaders announced that they would accede to 15 international conventions, Israel announced that it would impose sanctions as it considers the move an attempt to seek international recognition and potential intervention by Palestinians.
"The United States and Israel are jointly responsible for the collapse of the PA and its consequences," al-Ahmad said.
Continued: http://www.maannews.net/eng/ViewDetails.aspx?ID=688892

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THE CRISIS IN THE PEACE TALKS WAS PRE-PLANNED BY THE PALESTINIANS
Lt. Col. (ret.) Jonathan D. Halevi, April 10, 2014 Jerusalem Issue Briefs Vol. 14, No. 9 April 10, 2014 Institute for Contemporary Affairs, founded jointly with the Wechsler Family .
In March 2014, Saeb Erekat, the head of the Palestinian negotiating team, prepared a 65-page document that surveys the diplomatic process and offers list of recommendations for the PA to achieve Palestinian sovereignty in the territories demarcated by the 1967 lines. PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has recently implemented some of these recommendations.
The recommendations include submitting a request to immediately join the Geneva Conventions; declaring the impossibility of extending the negotiations after the end of the nine-month period on April 29, 2014; and opposing the Israeli proposal that the settlement blocs become part of Israel in any final agreement.
The plan also includes activating bilateral committees with Russia, the EU, and the UN, and cooperating with the monitoring committee of the Arab Peace Initiative, to muster support for the Palestinian anti-settlement position; urging the states of the world to uphold the European Union=92s guidelines regarding settlement activity; and escalating the peaceful popular struggle against settlements and the [security] fence.
The PA's latest moves reflect the long-term strategy Abbas has been implementing, which involves using diplomatic means to obtain international recognition of a sovereign Palestinian state along the 1967 lines without the Palestinians having to make concessions on the fundamental issues of the conflict, particularly the refugee issue and what is called the right of return. Continued: http://www.imra.org.il/story.php3?id=63622

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US TELLS ISRAEL: POLLARD'S RELEASE STILL ON THE TABLE
By Yuval Bagno - The Jerusalem Post - April 10, 2014 - Indyk tells sides if deal reached, US will consider releasing Israeli agent; sources confirm that Israel offered deal for extending talks, which includes releasing prisoners in exchange for freezing unilateral moves.
Sources in Jerusalem confirmed Thursday that Israel has presented the Palestinians with a new package aimed at extending peace talks, and the US has not taken the possible release of Israeli agent Jonathan Pollard off of the table.
A diplomatic source said that "if the Palestinian Authority agrees to stop its plans to join a number of international treaties and conventions, Israel will agree to a new prisoner release package in return for the continuation of negotiations until the end of the year at a minimum."
According to the source, the Palestinians expressed willingness to consider the compromise offer put on the table by Justice Minister Tzipi Livni.
The emerging deal will allow both sides to "come down from the tree" and appear publicly as if they did not compromise on their positions.
"This is part of the Israeli suggestion which is now being considered by the Palestinian side, while at the same time the US mediator sent a message to Israel - the release of Israeli agent Jonathan Pollard from a US prison is still a possibility the US administration will consider, if the sides reach a deal that includes Israel freeing terrorists," the sources said.
The sides are still not close to an agreement due to the Palestinian demand that Israel freeze settlement construction and due to the fact that the details of a new prisoner release deal have not been reached.
Israeli and Palestinian negotiators met again in Jerusalem on Thursday, along with US envoy to the peace talks, Martin Indyk.
The Prime Minister's Office emphasized Thursday that "if the PA will not stop its unilateral joining of UN conventions, the prime minister's decision is clear - unilateral steps will be answered by unilateral steps from our side. Some of our responses have already com,e and some are still being prepared and are awaiting approval from the political echelon in the event that they will be necessary." Continued:
http://www.jpost.com/Diplomacy-and-Politics/US-tells-Israel-Pollards-release-is-still-on-the-table-348192

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JERUSALEM NOT UP FOR GRABS
by Prof. Efraim Inbar - April 10, 2014 - BESA Center Perspectives Paper No. 243
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Kerry’s remarks about Gilo, a neighborhood in Jerusalem, reveal a profound misunderstanding of the situation. Palestinian demands to divide Jerusalem’s capital are unreasonable. Israel’s capital holds a spiritual and national significance to the Israeli population, as well as strategic and military importance. Consequently, no Israeli government will survive or support any concessions made in Jerusalem and it is time for the U.S. and the international community to recognize this.
US Secretary of State John Kerry has blamed the sudden deadlock in peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority on Israel’s plans to build additional apartments in Gilo, a southern Jerusalem neighborhood beyond the Green Line. This indicates America’s profound misunderstanding of the situation. With over 40,000 residents, Gilo is to be part of Israel under any agreement. More importantly, the peace negotiations have little chance of succeeding as long as the Palestinians demand the partition of Jerusalem.
The Palestinians and most of the international community fail to understand that the past offers made to divide Jerusalem – by Ehud Barak at the Camp David summit in 2000, and repeated by Ehud Olmert in 2007 – were divorced from the strong attachment a majority of Israelis feel towards the eternal city. The willingness of Barak and Olmert to divide the city completely lacks domestic political support. Furthermore, strategic considerations also dictate that Israel hold onto greater Jerusalem as a united city.
Israeli public opinion is committed to maintaining the status quo in Jerusalem. All polls show that over two thirds of Israelis feel that Jerusalem should remain the united capital of Israel, while only 20 percent favor dividing the capital between the Jewish state and a future Palestinian state. The group of Israelis expressing the strongest support in favor of Jerusalem remaining the undivided capital of Israel (almost 80 percent) is between the ages of 18 and 24. Of this group, even stronger support was expressed by Ultra-Orthodox and religious Israelis who are the fastest growing segments in the Jewish population. When asked whether Israel should relinquish control over the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, the holiest place in the world for Jews, over 70 percent of Israelis disagreed.
After Barak’s offer in 2000, over 250,000 people demonstrated in opposition to Barak’s violation of the Jerusalem taboo – the largest rally ever held in the city. The electrifying hold of Jerusalem on the Jewish psyche is not sufficiently appreciated. Moreover, an Orthodox injunction against visiting the Temple Mount has eroded, allowing a growing number of Israelis the spiritual experience of ascending the Mount and conjoining the metaphysical past and future. Such feelings are politically potent, foreclosing the possibility that Israelis will sit idly by and abide a transfer of sovereignty in Jerusalem. Continued: http://www.imra.org.il/story.php3?id=63625



MINISTER EGYPT RECEIVES OIL AID OF US$700 MILLION MONTHLY
Wed, 23/04/2014 - 12:43 MENA - Petroleum Minister Sherif Ismail said Egypt receives oil aid estimated at around US$700 million monthly from Arab countries like Saudi Arabia, Emirates and Kuwait.
In a phone call with a talk show aired on the privately-owned CBC TV channel on Tuesday, Ismail said that another installment of about $1 billion of dues of the foreign countries working in petroleum field will be paid during the coming two months.
Each of Saudi Arabia, Emirates and Kuwait promised financial and petroleum aid to Egypt that reached $12 billion since ouster of deposed President Mohamed Morsy in July.
The Arab petroleum aid is a pivotal source for Egypt to make up for the local shortage of petroleum supply which caused the government to approve plan to limit electricity loads due to shortage in fuel used in operating electricity generation stations.
Egypt is working to restructure its energy subsidies to reduce burdens on the state budget. Energy subsidy reached LE128 billion during the last fiscal year. Edited translation from MENA http://www.egyptindependent.com//news/minister-egypt-receives-oil-aid-us700-million-monthly

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ISRAEL CANNOT ACCEPT THE EMERGING ACCORD BETWEEN THE US AND IRAN
By Maj. Gen. (res.) Yaacov Amidror April 24, 2014 BESA Center Perspectives Paper No. 245
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: An accord between the P5+1 and Iran that would allow Iran to maintain a full nuclear fuel cycle is unacceptable to Israel. None of assumptions behind the emerging accord are sound: Neither the assumption that a monitoring regime could guarantee identification in real time of Iranian violations; nor the assumption that the US would act with alacrity if a breach is identified; nor the assumption that in the real world Iran will truly be deterred by US threats. An agreement along these lines would be far worse than no agreement, and could force Israel to respond independently.
Ostensibly, official US policy on Iran’s nuclear program is clear: The US will not allow Iran to produce a nuclear bomb. Moreover, President Obama has said that, for this purpose, “all options are on the table” – implying a military option as well. In addition, according to many report in American newspapers, President Obama has ordered the development of diversified US military capabilities with which to attack Iranian nuclear facilities, far beyond what existed in the previous administration – providing further evidence of the President’s seriousness.
But many people do not understand the meaning behind the vague statement, “We will not allow Iran to manufacture a nuclear bomb.” When will this happen? Who will decide that ‘this’ is the time for action? How? What does “manufacture” mean?
Robert Einhorn seeks to answer these questions in a 56-page comprehensive paper just published by the Brookings Institution (Preventing a Nuclear-Armed Iran: Requirements for a Comprehensive Nuclear Agreement). This paper cannot be ignored, since until a few months ago Einhorn was one of the top officials on Iran in the Obama administration, and he is very knowledgeable on the topic. (Einhorn was the Secretary of State’s special advisor for nonproliferation and arms control. During the Clinton administration, he was assistant secretary for nonproliferation).
Continued: http://besacenter.org/perspectives-papers/israel-accept-emerging-according-us-iran/?utm_source=rss&utm_
medium=rss&utm_campaign=israel-accept-emerging-according-us-iran

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DAILY BEAST REPORT ON KERRY REMARKS AGAINST ISRAEL THAT MAY EXPLAIN RADICAL ABBAS HARDLINE
[EDNOTE: ABBAS AND HAMAS JOIN TO NETANYAHU'S DISMAY]
[Dr. Aaron Lerner - IMRA: Monday, April 28, 2014 - At the start of his first term, President Obama pushed Abbas into taking a hardline position when he demanded an Israeli settlement freeze that the Palestinians had never required as a condition for negotiations. And now, days after Mr. Kerry told a group that Israel had absolutely no choice but accept a deal with the Palestinians come-what-may and implied he wanted Netanyahu removed from power, Mahmoud Abbas had the PLO take an unprecedented hard line - ruling out even a land swap.
Mr. Kerry no doubt has been encouraged by many radical left American Jews and Israeli Jews drooling at the idea that somehow the devil incarnate, Binyamin Netanyahu, the man whose defeat of Shimon Peres at the polls after the assassination of Rabin stopped the Israel from entering Paradise, might somehow be brought down by a crisis with the Palestinians.
A technical note: the critical working assumption of Mr. Kerry's remarks - that from a demographic standpoint time is working against Israel - doesn't jibe with reality.]
EXCLUSIVE: KERRY WARNS ISRAEL COULD BECOME "AN APARTHEID STATE"
Josh Rogin The Daily Beast 04.27.14 - The secretary of state said that if Israel doesn’t make peace soon, it could become ‘an apartheid state,’ like the old South Africa. Jewish leaders are fuming over the comparison.
If there’s no two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict soon, Israel risks becoming “an apartheid state,” Secretary of State John Kerry told a room of influential world leaders in a closed-door meeting Friday.
Senior American officials have rarely, if ever, used the term "apartheid" in reference to Israel, and President Obama has previously rejected the idea that the word should apply to Jewish State. Kerry's use of the loaded term is already rankling Jewish leaders in America—and it could attract unwanted attention in Israel, as well. Continued:
http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/04/27/exclusive-kerry-warns-israel-could-become-an-apartheid-state.html

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SECRETARY KERRY, I SUPPORT ISRAEL BUT IT IS DOOMED IF IT DOES NOT MAKE A DEAL
Dr. Aaron Lerner - Tuesday, April 29, 2014 IMRA: So here is what we have according to our supporter who won't allow anyone to question his commitment to Israel:
On the one hand there is Israel: doomed if it doesn't cut a deal with the Palestinians come-what-may.
On the other hand there are the Palestinians: the grave consequence for the Palestinians if they fail to cut a deal with Israel is that.....
Say. What was that again?
What's the consequence for the Palestinians?
Oh right.
The consequence of sitting tight, according to Mr. Kerry is that Israel will become a unitary, binational state that (despite the actual demographic trends) will be majority Arab.
What a threat: Compromise now and get a small Palestinian state. Take a hard line and have an Arab majority state from the River to the Sea.
Tough call...
On Support for Israel Press Statement John Kerry Secretary of State Washington, DC April 28, 2014 http://www.state.gov/secretary/remarks/2014/04/225326.htm

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BAN ENDED ON VISITING AL AQSA MOSQUE
Jordan times 2 May ’14:”Muslim scholars end ban on visiting Aqsa Mosque under occupation”
”Mudlim scholars an intellectuals . . .have reached a consensus . . .to end a ban of Muslim visits to Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem” [...]
“There are currently plans by the Israeli government to divide Al Aqsa or to demolish it and an influx of Muslim pilgrims lends support to the concerns of Jerusalemite Palestinians,” the scholars stated. [...]
Regarding visiting the Blessed Aqsa Mosque under occupation: [...]
First: The scholars participating in the Road to Jerusalem Conference see that there is no difficulty in religion (La Haraj) for the following segments to visit the Blessed Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem:
1. Palestinians wherever they may be, in or out of Palestine and regardless of their nationalities.
2. Muslims with passports from countries outside the Muslim World.
Second: In all cases, the following conditions must be observed:
1. That it does not lead to normalisation with the occupation, which may cause harm to the Palestinian cause.
2. That the visit supports and assists Palestinians and not the occupiers; and here we affirm that any transactions including buying, selling, dealings, accommodations and transportation undertaken must benefit the Palestinians and the Jerusalemites and none other than them.
3. That visitors enter with Palestinian or Jordanian tourist groups and stay clear of programmes run by the occupier.
4. It is preferred that trips to Al Aqsa be within the routes of umra and Hajj trips as much as possible and in an effective and collective manner that achieves the significant religious benefit of this; and in a manner that supports the Palestinian economy and particularly, the economy of Jerusalem; and politically with the aim of protecting Al Aqsa and the religious antiquities. Amman, 29th Jumada Al Akhira, 1435 AH/29th April, 2014 AD
http://www.imra.org.il/story.php3?id=63734

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[THE ROADMAP DELINEATED BY THE QUARTET [2003] SEEMS TO BE THE FINAL AGREEMENT OFFERED]
HAMAS WILL NEVER RECOGNIZE ISRAEL AND WILL NOT ACCEPT THE CONDITIONS LAID OUT BY THE MIDDLE EAST PEACEMAKING QUARTET ACCORDING TO THE ISLAMIST MOVEMENT'S DEPUTY LEADER
May 4, 2014 [...] Under terms of the deal, Gaza's Hamas rulers and the Palestine Liberation Organization of President Mahmoud Abbas are to work together to form a new unity government which will prepare for national elections. But Israel reacted furiously, saying it would not negotiate with any government backed by Hamas, whose charter calls for the destruction of the Jewish state, effectively putting the final nail in the coffin of the latest round of U.S.-brokered peace talks.
Recognizing Israel is one of the key conditions laid out in the 2003 peacemaking roadmap of the Middle East Quartet, which brings together the United Nations, the European Union, the United States and Russia.
The other two key demands are a renunciation of violence and acceptance of all prior agreements with Israel.
Recognizing Israel is one of the key conditions laid out in the 2003 peacemaking roadmap of the Middle East Quartet, which brings together the United Nations, the European Union, the United States and Russia.
The other two key demands are a renunciation of violence and acceptance of all prior agreements with Israel.
Abbas, who is to head the new government, to consist of political independents, has insisted it will abide by all three principles.
But Abu Marzouq said Hamas would never accept the Quartet's conditions.
"Hamas rejects the Quartet's conditions because it denies some of our people's rights," he told reporters."We will always refuse any conditions that deny our Palestinian rights." Continued: http://www.imra.org.il/story.php3?id=63741