VTJP Palestine-Israel Newslinks 30 July 2013: Israeli-Palestinian negotiations: why now?

31 July 2013 VTJP


International Middle East Media Center

Fatah dismisses papers that describe plot against Hamas
IMEMC – The two documents allegedly written by Fatah, that describe a plot against the Hamas party, were dismissed today as fabrications by members of Fatah s revolutionary council. On Tuesday, Hamas members attended a conference concerning the documents that they allege were sent by Fatah to the media and security attachÈs at the Palestinian embassy in Cairo. …

U.S. Secretary of State calls for peace agreement in Israel-Palestine within 9 months
IMEMC – On Tuesday afternoon, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry held a press conference in which he laid out his timeline for final status negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, calling for a final agreement within nine months. This is not the first time such an announcement has been made by a U.S. official in fact, every U.S. President since Jimmy Carter has made similar proclamations. …

Army Claims Uncovering A Rifle Near Hebron
IMEMC – The Israeli Army claimed Tuesday [July 30 2013} that Israeli soldiers managed to uncover a rifle during what was described as a routine inspection of cars near the southern West Bank city of Hebron. …

Ma’an News

Settlers attack workers, cars in Nablus
7/31/2013 – NABLUS (Ma’an) — A group of settlers attacked Palestinian workers in a Nablus village on Wednesday, a Palestinian Authority official said. Ghassan Daghlas, who monitors settler activity in the northern West Bank, told Ma’an that 15 settlers from the illegal Yizhar settlement attacked laborers in the village of Asira al-Qibliya. The group of twenty workers were building a water tank near the….

Hamas: Docs expose Fatah campaign in Egypt
7/31/2013 – GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Hamas on Tuesday claimed to have obtained documents it said proved Fatah’s involvement in an incitement campaign against the movement in Egyptian media. Hamas leader Salah Bardaweel presented the documents in a news conference in Gaza. He claimed they were issued by the Palestinian intelligence, its embassy in Cairo, and some Fatah leaders to fabricate false news in….

Prisoner has son in second sperm smuggling birth
7/31/2013 – NABLUS (Ma’an) — Abdul Kareem al-Rimawi became a father for the first time on Wednesday, despite currently serving a 25-year jail sentence in an Israeli prison. His wife Lida, 34, gave birth to a healthy baby boy weighing 2. 8 kg at the Razan Medical Center in Nablus. Majd was conceived at the Razan clinic by IVF using sperm smuggled from her jailed….

Israel’s Peres says ‘no alternative to peace’
8/1/2013 – VILNIUS (AFP) — Israeli President Shimon Peres on Wednesday said he was “hopeful” that peace talks with Palestinians will lead to a two-state solution and bring prosperity to the Middle East.”As an Israeli I am now very hopeful because the peace process was renewed between the Palestinians and ourselves,” he told reporters on a visit to Lithuania, which holds the rotating EU presidency. Peres, who….

Philippines set to keep troops in Golan
7/31/2013 – MANILA (AFP) — The Philippines said Wednesday it would likely keep its 340 soldiers in the Golan Heights as part of a United Nations peacekeeping force, amid improved security for the troops. Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario told reporters the UN was close to fulfilling three conditions on upgrading safety set by the Philippines that would allow the Filipino soldiers to stay beyond August 11.”The….

PA urges investigation into Bennet’s ‘kill Arabs’ remarks
7/31/2013 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — The Palestinian Authority Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Wednesday called on Israel to investigate remarks made by Israel’s Economy and Trade Minister, which made claims about killing Palestinians. Naftali Bennett, leader of the far-right Jewish Home partner, commented to Israeli newspaper Yediot Aharonot following news of a Palestinian prisoner release that: “If you catch terrorists, you have to simply….

EU’s Ashton: Israeli, Palestinian deal ‘within reach’
7/31/2013 – BRUSSELS (AFP) — Israeli and Palestinian negotiators’ stated goal of reaching a comprehensive peace deal inside nine months is realistic, the European Union’s top diplomat said Wednesday, painting the bloc as a “reliable friend” to both sides.”I firmly believe that a final end to this conflict is within reach,” Catherine Ashton said in a statement.”I call on all those who wish….

Analysts: Peace talks ‘doomed’
7/31/2013 – JERUSALEM (AFP) — Middle East peace talks, which resumed in Washington after a three-year break, are doomed to fail, Palestinian analysts said Wednesday, after negotiators set a nine-month target for an agreement. Despite Israel announcing the release of 104 prisoners as a confidence-building measure, analysts said that ordinary Palestinians would take little interest in the talks, which they would regard as a sop to Washington.”The….

Arab Idol star to perform in Bethlehem
7/31/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Gaza singer Mohammed Assaf is set to perform in Bethlehem on Thursday. Assaf, who won the Arab Idol singing contest in June, will sing at 10. 30 p. m in the Convention Palace as part of the first Solomon Pools’ Ramadan Nights Festival. Tickers for the two-hour show will be available on the door, unless already sold out. 1 ) Libra….

Oldest known person in Hebron dies
7/31/2013 – HEBRON (Ma’an) — Medics in Hebron announced Wednesday the death of Hasan Asfour, 111, the oldest known person living in the West Bank city. Asfour was born in 1902, according to his identification records. He worked as a night guard for the water authority of Hebron municipality in the al-Fawar area in 1937, and later worked as a mechanic and was promoted manager, a….

Regime, rebels seek to split Syria
7/31/2013 – BEIRUT (AFP) — The regime’s new victory in Homs and rebel advances in the north and south of Syria are signs that both sides are looking to make headway before much-touted peace talks.”Having consolidated its victory in Homs, the regime controls all the area stretching from Damascus to the coast,” says analyst Karim Bitar of the French Institute of International and Strategic Relations….

African Union delegation meet Egypt’s Mursi
7/31/2013 – CAIRO, Qahirah (AFP) — An African Union delegation in Cairo has met Egypt’s deposed president Mohamed Mursi, the interim presidency and the head of the team said on Wednesday. The presidency said they held talks with Mursi, who has been detained by the army at a secret location since his overthrow, while delegation head Alfa Omar Konari also confirmed the meeting at a press conference. [END]

NGO: Jihadist hold 200 Syria Kurds hostage
7/31/2013 – BEIRUT (AFP) — Jihadist groups linked to Al-Qaeda have taken hostage around 200 Kurdish civilians after violent clashes with Kurdish fighters in two villages of eastern Syria, a monitoring group said.”Fighters of Al-Nusra Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant have seized control of Tall Aren village in Aleppo province and are laying siege to another village nearby, Tall Hassel. They have….

Palestine News Network

WATCH: Israeli Soldier Brutally Assaults Palestinian Workers
Palestine News Network

PCHR Calls Upon President Abbas to Save Lives of 36 Patients Suffering from “Leukemia” in Gaza
Palestine News Network

Clashes Erupt between Palestinians and Settlers near Nablus
Palestine News Network

Israel Arrests 6 Palestinians from West Bank
Palestine News Network

Abbas: Negotiations with Israel Will Mainly Focus on Security and Borders
Palestine News Network

Israeli Forces Raid Cremisan Monastery in Bethlehem
Palestine News Network

Rocket Hits Negev; No Injuries Reported
Palestine News Network

IOF Forces Injure 3 Palestinians, Arrest Mosque’s Imam in Jenin Refugee Camp
Palestine News Network

Abbas: ‘Not a Single Israeli’ in Future Palestinian State
Palestine News Network

International Solidarity Movement

Awad, 19, wounded by Israeli fire while gathering firewood
7/31/2013 – International Solidarity Movement – 31st July 2013, International Solidarity Movement, Rosa Schiano, Gaza, Occupied Palestine – On Thursday afternoon, July 25, 2013, a 19 year old, Rafat Awad Abdel Aty was injured while working in an area called “Jamarik” near Beit Hanoun in the northern Gaza Strip. Awad, who was admitted to the Kamal Odwan hospital, told us that he was collecting firewood to be sold at about 500 meters….

Relief Web

occupied Palestinian territory: Protect citizens’ rights to protest peacefully against forced evictions
Relief Web 31 Jul 2013 – Source: Amnesty Country: occupied Palestinian territory The Israeli authorities must not use excessive force on demonstrators planning to protest against a plan to forcibly evict tens of thousands of Arab Bedouins from their homes in southern Israel, said Amnesty International….

World: Analysis: The UN in 2023
Relief Web 31 Jul 2013 – Source: IRIN Country: World By Anna Jefferys DAKAR, 31 July 2013 (IRIN) – The UN and other aid agencies face ever-increasing levels of humanitarian need: the number of recorded disasters has doubled in the past two decades, according to the…

Lebanon: La colËre, l’espoir perdu et, dans certains cas, le bonheur retrouvÈ des enfants syriens
Relief Web 31 Jul 2013 – Source: IRIN Country: Lebanon, occupied Palestinian territory, Syrian Arab Republic CAMP DE CHATILA, LIBAN, 31 juillet 2013 (IRIN) – Le conflit syrien a tuÈ plus de 6 500 enfants et en a transformÈ prËs d’un million en rÈfugiÈs. Parmi ceux…

occupied Palestinian territory: Middle East diplomatic Quartet welcomes renewed Israeli-Palestinian talks
Relief Web 30 Jul 2013 – Source: UN News Service Country: occupied Palestinian territory 30 July 2013 The United Nations and its diplomatic partners in the Middle East Quartet today welcomed the resumption of direct talks between Israelis and Palestinians, with senior negotiators from both…

The National

Egypt orders Islamist sit-in protests to be cleared
The National 31 Jul 2013 – Interim government says ‘terrorist acts’ and traffic disruption caused by the protesters are a threat to national security, raising fears of renewed round of violence. Alice Fordham reports from Cairo

Dubai takes centre stage in new smartphone app
The National 31 Jul 2013 – The game, “Dubai Delivery”, is the first cultural logistics game based in the city and it allows people to manage a delivery service using a digital 3D map.

Dubai petrol stations to allow credit card payments as ban ends
The National 31 Jul 2013 – A six-year self-imposed ban on the use of cards will come to an end on Sunday.

Hat trick that keeps UAE workers cool in the sun
The National 31 Jul 2013 – Since Ramadan began, 3,000 outdoor workers have received caps with solar-powered fans attached.

Outrage over British Dh16,000 visa bond
The National 31 Jul 2013 – Controversial scheme would charge visitors from six former colonies, including India, a refundable deposit. But opposition is rising. Omar Karmi reports

Manning conviction sends a warning
The National 31 Jul 2013 – Verdict may be a victory for Obama administration’s aggressive campaign against leakers, but journalists and rights groups warn it could have a chilling effect on US national security reporting. Taimur Khan reports from New York

Israel, Palestinians remain deeply divided
The National 31 Jul 2013 – Israel and the Palestinians remain far apart over terms of any peace deal, officials from both sides made clear yesterday, a day after talks resumed in Washington for the first time in nearly three years.

Palestinians visit Knesset
The National 31 Jul 2013 – Palestinian officials visited Israel’s parliament for the first time ever yesterday to meet their Israeli counterparts, as the two sides embarked on a new round of peace negotiations.


When summer camp liberates American Jewish parents
Ha’aretz – 31 Jul 2013

The original ‘no’: Why the Arabs rejected Zionism, and why it matters
Ha’aretz – 31 Jul 2013

Israel will never be a ‘normal’ state
Ha’aretz – 31 Jul 2013

The EU’s glaring hypocrisy regarding Israel
Ha’aretz – 31 Jul 2013

Frenkel s honorable withdrawal
Ha’aretz – 31 Jul 2013

Netanyahu, don’t be afraid to divide the land
Ha’aretz – 31 Jul 2013

Israel and Palestine: an alliance of orphans
Ha’aretz – 30 Jul 2013

I’m proud to be a product of the Jewish-American establishment
Ha’aretz – 30 Jul 2013

Jerusalem Post

Hezbollah maintains complex network of front companies trading in counterfeit medicine
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Report: This international business in counterfeit medicine facilitates the group s terrorist operations.

Loan shark gang used violence to milk south TA residents, indictment alleges
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Gang uses threatening text messages, surprise home visits, and violence to run an extortion ring.

Aharonovitch: Psychological exam will be necessary for acquiring gun license
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – There are 290,000 privately owned firearms in the hands of citizens and security companies in Israel.

One in four households will spend less on food following state budget, survey says
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – A further 11 percent of the respondents say they will also have to cut down on medicine; 39 percent on clothes.

IDF boot camp commander traveled the world to find a place he belongs
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Jonathan Sleischmann was 13 years old when a firebomb was hurled into the open window of his Jewish day school in Caracas.

Israel s 1st foreign-licensed lawyer touts change to legal playing field
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Registered to advise Israeli clients on legal matters abroad, Baruch Bebchick said that the change rights a longstanding wrong.

Bar-Ilan University to get world s most advanced archeological field device
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Instrument will enable on-site analysis of microscopic finds, says Prof. Aren Maeir.

Foreign Ministry workers sanctions frozen for 45 days to give mediator a chance
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – In return for suspension of sanctions, Finance Minister will halt plan to deduct 25% from workers’ upcoming salaries.

Eini requests PM appoint negotiator over ports
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Request comes after National Labor Court ruled Histadrut could not strike until Sept. 1 over gov’t plans to reform ports.

PA minister urges Palestinians to revolt against Hamas
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Sign of growing Fatah-Hamas tensions during Egypt crisis.

Palestinian NGO Network: Resuming peace talks now is “dangerous”
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Statement says talks are “cover for Israel’s expansionist and racist policies” that exploit “so-called political process.”

Israeli Arab businessmen backtrack on Ramallah ‘Fox’ store following protests
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Palestinian activists against opening Israeli store in the West Bank because it would be “normalization” with Israel.

Syrian opposition plans new government in August
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Rebels to form a government in exile after Eid al-Fitr.

Four Palestinian men arrested for 2012 home invasion, murder
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Algabay was stabbed in the chest when he tried to stop burglars; case cracked after one man arrested on a security charge.

Temple Mount shut to non-Muslims till after Ramadan
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Joint Committee of Temple Organizations say change in policy occurred because Palestinian youth sleep at the site.

Syria’s Assad on popularity campaign with new Instagram account
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – The acccount, which has already uploaded more than 60 photos, 3,500 subscribers, has taken the handle syrianpresidency .

Smashed windows and arrests: Haredi demand for woman to sit at back of bus gets out of hand
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Beit Shemesh police called in after row spirals on Egged bus.

Rights group condemns lashing, jailing of Saudi blogger
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Jeddah Court hands down sentence on Raif Badawi, who started ‘Free Social Liberals’ website to discuss role of religion in Saudi Arabia.

PMO official: Current Beduin situation in Negev unsustainable
Jerusalem Post 31 Jul 2013 – Doron Almog is intent on settling Beduin despite the political outcry, says Beduin land claims have not been proven.

Religious rights NGO blasts haredi rabbi for iPhone ruling
Jerusalem Post 30 Jul 2013 – Bnei Brak rabbinical court head: It s no mitzva to return “non-kosher” smartphones that people have left behind.

African migrant suspected of beating man in front of family in south Tel Aviv
Jerusalem Post 30 Jul 2013 – African men reportedly opened car door, pulls man out and beat him, kicked him and stabbed him until he passed out.


The peace process meets Einstein s definition of insanity, says Josh Ruebner

Father of Edward Snowden issues open letter to Obama denouncing Orwellian surveillance programs

Israeli company to win Indian mass electronic surveillance contract

War in Syria highlights vulnerability of Palestinian refugees

The assassination of Julian Assange We Steal Secrets : A masterclass in propaganda

Worldwide Support Grows for Iraq Human Rights Hearing

Israel to build railway network across occupied Palestinian territories

Images of Bedouin displacement foreshadow a Nakba in the Negev

The Palestinian Authority police thwart demonstration in Ramallah against political negotiations; arresting four and attacking dozens of demonstrators, among them Palestinian Legislative Council member Khalida Jarrar.

Syria News – July 28, 2013 (Warning: Graphic Videos)

Daily Star

Egypt orders camps cleared, protesters buckle down
Daily Star 31 Jul 2013 Protesters holding sticks and wearing helmets and makeshift body armor stand behind mounds of sandbags, tires and brick walls.

Billionaire Saudi prince loses U.K. court battle over Gadhafi jet
Daily Star 31 Jul 2013 A billionaire Saudi prince was ordered by a British court Wednesday to pay a $10-million commission linked to the sale of a private jet to Libya s Colonel Gadhafi, in a humiliating legal defeat for one of…

989 killed in Iraq in July, most since 2008: govt
Daily Star 31 Jul 2013 Violence in Iraq killed 989 people in July, government figures released on Wednesday showed, making it the deadliest month since April 2008.

Uruguay Congress begins marijuana legalization debate
Daily Star 31 Jul 2013 Uruguay’s lower house Wednesday began debate on a bill legalizing marijuana, which for the first time would put a government in charge of the production, sale and distribution of the drug.

Egypt orders police to clear protest camps
Daily Star 31 Jul 2013 Egypt’s military-backed government on Wednesday ordered the police to clear two Cairo protest camps packed with supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi, saying they posed a threat to national security and were “terrorizing” citizens.

Syrian Army rigs east Lebanon houses with explosives
Daily Star 31 Jul 2013 A Syrian Army unit rigged four vacant houses in the Lebanese border area of Masharih al-Qaa with explosives Wednesday, security sources told The Daily Star.

John Kerry arrives in Pakistan for key talks: AFP
Daily Star 31 Jul 2013 US Secretary of State John Kerry flew to Pakistan late Wednesday to press the new government on eliminating Islamist militant safe-havens as US-led troops prepare to leave Afghanistan.

One soldier killed, another wounded in east Lebanon
Daily Star 31 Jul 2013 One soldier was killed and another one wounded Wednesday during a military operation in pursuit of a wanted suspect in the east Lebanon town of Majdal Anjar, security sources told The Daily Star.

Iran’s envoy, Mikati discuss pending development projects
Daily Star 31 Jul 2013 Iran s Ambassador Ghazanfar Runkabadi discussed Wednesday with caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati pending developments projects and agreements with Tehran.

Egypt: 3 Brotherhood leaders referred to trial
Daily Star 31 Jul 2013 Egyptian prosecutors have referred three top leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood, including the group’s fugitive spiritual leader, to trial for allegedly inciting the killing of protesters last month.

Palestinians visit Israel’s parliament
Daily Star 31 Jul 2013 Palestinian officials visit Israel’s parliament for the first time ever to meet their Israeli counterparts, as the two sides moved toward peace negotiations.

YNet News

US to go ahead with joint military exercise in Egypt
YNet News, 31 Jul 2013 – ….

Report: Syrian missiles moved before alleged Israeli strike
YNet News, 31 Jul 2013 – ….

Syrian extremists linked with al-Qaeda kidnap 200 Kurds
YNet News, 31 Jul 2013 – ….

Turkish police fire teargas to disperse hundreds in Istanbul
YNet News, 31 Jul 2013 – ….

Israeli citizen attacked in Kalkilia, sustains light injuries
YNet News, 31 Jul 2013 – ….

Incitement within bounds of Torah
YNet News, 31 Jul 2013 – Op-ed: Haredi zealots directing toxic arrows not just at ‘evil government’ but also at own flesh and blood ….

Devil’s test
YNet News, 31 Jul 2013 – Op-ed: Inclusion of Arab Israeli terrorists on list of prisoners slated for release makes a mockery of Israeli citizenship and sovereignty ….

Palestinian Information Center

Israeli plan to build new Jewish neighborhood near Aqsa Mosque
PIC – The Aqsa foundation for endowment and heritage said that the Israeli government intends to build a settlement outpost and a synagogue to the northeast of the Aqsa Mosque.

IOA refuses to release sick administrative detainee
PIC – The Israeli occupation authorities (IOA) refused to release the oldest serving detainee Sheikh Nazih Abu Oun despite his ill health.

Hamas lashes out at ‚¨ Sfutile‚¨ ù negotiations
PIC – Hamas movement lashed out at the PA in Ramallah for indulging anew in ‚¨ Sfutile‚¨ ù negotiations with the Israeli occupation.

IPS sets up jamming devices in Raymond prison, isolates two prisoners
PIC – Palestinian human rights center revealed that the Israeli Prison Services (IPS) has set up jamming devices in Raymond prison.

Ending the division more important than resumption of talks, says MP Abu Baker
PIC – MP Najat Abu Baker, affiliated with the Fatah movement, stated that ending the division and achieving the national construction is more important than negotiation option.

Popular and factional rejection of resumption of talks
PIC – The PFLP has declared its total rejection of the PA decision to resume negotiations saying that its decision does not represent the will of the Palestinian people.

Human chain against Prawer Plan in Haifa
PIC – Hundreds have organized a human chain Tuesday evening in the northern city of Haifa in Palestinian territories occupied in 1948 in protest against Prawer plan.

Gov’t: The PA’s talks with the occupation are another round of its failures
PIC – The Palestinian government in Gaza said the Palestinian authority reproduced another chapter of its failures when it decided to resume its negotiations with the Israeli occupation.

IOF soldiers detain five citizens in Al-Khalil
PIC – Israeli occupation forces (IOF) arrested five Palestinians, including three teenagers, in Al-Khalil at dawn Wednesday.

Jewish settlers attack construction workers
PIC – Jewish settlers attacked construction workers in Assira Al-Qabaliya village, south of Nablus, on Wednesday morning.


US Official says Goal of Talks is to Reach Final Peace Settlement
WAFA – 31 Jul 2013

EU s Ashton Welcomes Resumption of Peace Talks
WAFA – 31 Jul 2013

Hague Welcomes Resumption of Peace Talks
WAFA – 31 Jul 2013

ECHO Grants ¨ 1M to Address Humanitarian Needs Of Palestinian Children
WAFA – 31 Jul 2013


Israel and Palestinians agree to tackle tougher issues in peace talks
LA Times 30 Jul 2013 – Control of Jerusalem and the claims of Palestinian refugees are among the issues that will be on the table, Secretary of State John F. Kerry says. WASHINGTON Israeli and Palestinian negotiators agreed Tuesday that their peace talks would tackle even the most politically sensitive…

In Egypt unrest, media become a weapon of the warring sides
LA Times 30 Jul 2013 – Now that Egypt’s military is back in power, it’s replaced Morsi’s government in using newspapers and TV to shape opinion. Islamists have turned to social media. CAIRO The unrest that has shaken Egypt for more than a month has generated a war of images…

Syrian army says it has taken control of longtime rebel stronghold
LA Times 30 Jul 2013 – The loss of Khalidiya is a blow, and shows how the army appears determined to crush the opposition, neighborhood by neighborhood, in the war-weary city of Homs. HOMS, Syria A pair of slender minarets and the silver dome of the Khalid bin Walid mosque…

Head of Syrian Opposition Rejects Talks With Assad
New York Times 31 Jul 2013 – Ahmad al-Jarba, president of the Syrian National Coalition, hardened his position and also said talks must be put off until the rebels made military gains.

In Gaza, Iran Finds an Ally More Agreeable Than Hamas
New York Times 31 Jul 2013 – Unlike Hamas, Islamic Jihad, also a militant group, has kept up relations with the government of President Bashar al-Assad, a longtime Iranian ally.

Egypt Decrees That Pro-Morsi Sit-Ins Be Dispersed
New York Times 31 Jul 2013 – The military-led government instructed its security forces to end two large sit-ins in the capital by supporters of the deposed Islamist president, risking a new round of violent convulsions.

Syrian Missiles Were Moved Before Israeli Strike, Officials Say
New York Times 31 Jul 2013 – American officials said that further Israeli strikes against the Russian-made antiship cruise missiles were likely, after the attack in July failed to destroy all of them.

Egypt Orders Police to Clear Protest Camps
New York Times 31 Jul 2013 – Egypt’s military-backed government on Wednesday ordered the police to clear two Cairo protest camps packed with supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi, saying they posed a threat to national security and were “terrorizing” citizens.

Civilian Casualties in Afghanistan Rise 23 Percent
New York Times 31 Jul 2013 – An increase in the first six months of 2013 reversed a decline for all of 2012, which had raised hopes that the toll would keep falling.

Prof. Leo Leiderman to be next BoI Governor
Globes Main News – Dr. Karnit Flug has resigned as Deputy Governor and congratulated the Bank Hapoalim chief economist on his expected appointment.

Better Place buyers fail to meet payments
Globes Main News – Sunrise has not yet raised the money to meet the payments for Better Place Israel, nor has it completed due diligence of the company.

Clal Insurance’s Thai buyer has Hong Kong partner
Globes Main News – Li Haifeng was reportedly in Israel last week and apparently met with Finance Minister Yair Lapid.

Wed: Israel Chemicals still falling on flat market
Globes Main News – Further falls by Israel Chemicals were balanced by gains in the telco sector.

Israel Chemicals fertilizers unit shuns equipment investment
Globes Main News – IC Fertilizers will not spend $10 million to buy a new mechanical shovel if phosphate mining at Sde Barir is not approved.

Unemployment rate up in second quarter
Globes Macro Economics – The unemployment rate rose to 6.9% in the second quarter of 2013 from 6.6% in the first quarter, the Central Bureau of Statistics reports.

BoI warns on mortgage repayment ability
Globes Macro Economics – Bank of Israel: Despite rapid growth in mortgages, relative debt is lower than countries that had a housing market crisis.

Israeli Intelligence Assets Aid African Dictators
Tikun Olam – Africa has for decades been a playground for Israel: both in the literal sense as a spot for Israelis to play in the sun (Kenya, Zanzibar, Sharm el-Sheikh not technically in Africa, but Egypt is ); and in the figurative sense regarding Israeli diplomats and spies who ve woven…

Toobin trusts State Dep t more than Manning, Keller says he was motivated by personal unhappiness

Mondoweiss – If you’re like me, right now you want to reach out to Bradley Manning and thank him for his strength of character and lonely courage during a long ordeal. But it’s been a bloodbath for Manning in the mainstream media, with John Hockenberry of NPR lately…

State Department official: You are likely to see Israeli settlements continue during peace talks
Mondoweiss – On the same day Secretary of State John Kerry spoke about renewed peace talks, an official said that Israel was likely to build more settlements. (Bureau of Public Affairs/State Department) Israel will likely build more settlements in the West Bank despite renewed peace talks, a State…

Maureen Dowd joins Joyce Carol Oates as expert on gender relations of Arabs
Mondoweiss – First Joyce Carol Oates offered herself as an expert on gender relations in the Arab world. Where 99.3% of women report having been sexually harassed & rape is epidemic–Egypt–natural to inquire: what’s the predominant religion ? People took her to task for that. Now Maureen Dowd gets…

Netanyahu s coalition partner says I have killed lots of Arabs& and there is no problem
Mondoweiss – I can’t wait for the liberal Zionists to wrap their arms around this one! Economy and trade minister Naftali Bennett, a key coalition partner in Netanyahu’s government, drops the veil. David Sheen mentioned this in his post on racism yesterday . Here is the Jerusalem Post ‘s…

Skeptical of peace talks, AP s Matt Lee scoffs that dreamers are realists and corrects Kerry on Coleridge
Mondoweiss – Yesterday’s State Department briefing saw yet another incredible performance by Matt Lee of the Associated Press, expressing doubt, mistrust and mockery re the State Department’s assertion that peace talks had renewed in earnest. I can’t recall any other American journalist challenging authority in such an obstreperous…

Dr. Oz Tells Israelis To Chill Out
The Foward Breaking News 31 Jul 2013 – America s best-known doctor, on his first trip to Israel, has this advice for the locals: Keep walking, but chill out. Click here for the rest of the article…

Israel Defends Detention of 5-Year-Old Palestinian Boy
The Foward Breaking News 31 Jul 2013 – The Israel Defense Forces detention of a five-year-old Palestinian boy in Hebron earlier this month was a legitimate step in order to thwart the threat posed by the activities of a minor, the IDF s legal adviser in the West Bank has ruled. Click here for the…

Israel and Palestinians Far Apart After First Day of Talks
The Foward Breaking News 31 Jul 2013 – Israel and the Palestinians remain far apart over terms of any peace deal, officials from both sides made clear on Wednesday, a day after talks resumed in Washington for the first time in nearly three years. Click here for the rest of the article…

Ultra-Orthodox Break Windows After Woman Refuses To Go to Back of Bus
The Foward Breaking News 31 Jul 2013 – Ultra-Orthodox protesters attacked and damaged three buses in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Beit Shemesh on Wednesday, after a female traveling on one of the buses refused a Haredi passenger s order to move to the back and sit separately from the men. Click here for the rest…

Egypt: Presidency – Investigations With Hamas Does Not Affect Egypt’s Support to Palestinian Cause
allAfrica.com31 Jul 2013 – [Egypt Online]On the visit to Cairo by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and his meeting with the President and the vice President, Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy and the Chief of intelligence service, Media advisor to the President Ahmed El Meslemany said these meetings stressed support for the…

South Africa: IFP On U.S. Middle East Peace Talks
allAfrica.com31 Jul 2013 – [IFP]The Obama Administration, the Israel Cabinet and the Palestinian Authority must be commended and encouraged for the latest positive steps to put the Middle East peace process back on track.

Police ordered to end Cairo sit-ins
BBC 31 Jul 2013 – Egypt’s military-backed cabinet orders police to end sit-ins by supporters of ousted President Morsi, saying they are a national security threat.

UN to probe Syria chemical weapons
BBC 31 Jul 2013 – United Nations inspectors will go to Syria to visit three sites where chemical weapons are suspected of being used, a spokesman says.

Livni urges Israel support for talks
BBC 31 Jul 2013 – Israel’s peace negotiator, Tzipi Livni, calls on parties in its coalition government to support the latest round of direct talks with the Palestinians.

Egypt cabinet calls for “all necessary measures” against Mursi supporters
Al-Akhbar News 31 Jul 2013 – An Egyptian supporter walk past a portrait of the deposed president Mohammed Mursi during a demonstration against the government in Cairo on 31 July 2013. (Photo: AFP – Fayez Nureldine) Egypt’s cabinet tasked police on Wednesday to take “all necessary measures” to end protests by supporters…

Palestinian and Israeli officials meet as analysts cast doubts on peace talks
Al-Akhbar News 31 Jul 2013 – Abdullah Abdullah, Chairman of the Political Committee of the Palestinian Legislative Council, left, Israeli parliament member Hilik Bar, center, and Mohammed Madani, a member of Fatah’s central committee, right, give a press conference as Palestinian officials visited Israel’s parliament in Jerusalem for the first time ever…

Palestine: Dividing Land, Erasing Identity in Qalandiya
Al-Akhbar News 31 Jul 2013 – Visitors walk past a giant photograph showing the “Apartheid Wall” at the West Bank at the “Wall on Wall” exhibition by German photographer Kai Wiedenhoefer, displayed on a remaining section of the Berlin wall 26 July 2013. (Photo: AFP – John
Macdougall) Visitors walk past a…

Libya court sentences former Gaddafi minister to death
Al-Akhbar News 31 Jul 2013 – A former minister in the government of Muammar Gaddafi was sentenced to death on Wednesday for inciting violence against protesters during the uprising that led to the Libyan dictator’s overthrow in 2011, his lawyer said on Wednesday. In the first such ruling against a Gaddafi-era official,…

Syria: Palestinian Initiative to End Fighting in Yarmouk Camp
Al-Akhbar News 31 Jul 2013 – Palestinian children who were living in Yarmouk Palestinian refugee camp before fleeing Syria, hold banners during a protest in front of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Beirut 17 January 2013. (Photo: Reuters – Sharif Karim) Palestinian children who were living in Yarmouk…

Leaving Damascus: Syrian Air Travel Sinks Under Sanctions
Al-Akhbar News 31 Jul 2013 – A Syrian rebel aims his weapon during clashes with government forces in the streets near Aleppo international airport in northern Syria on 4 March 2013. (Photo: AFP -Stephen J. Boitano) A Syrian rebel aims his weapon during clashes with government forces in the streets near Aleppo…

Will Egypt’s Workers Pay the Price Again?
Al-Akhbar Politics 30 Jul 2013 – Municiple workers sweep the street closed by supporters of deposed president Mohamed Morsi in Nasr City, a district of eastern Cairo, on 28 July 2013, as supporters of Morsi continue to hold a sit in outside Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque demanding his reinstatement. (Photo: AFP – Fayez…

Saudi Grounds Hariri: Back to the Screen
Al-Akhbar Politics 30 Jul 2013 – Hariri does not want to remain hosted by the Saudis any longer, realizing that running the Future Movement remotely is useless. (Photo: Archive) Hariri does not want to remain hosted by the Saudis any longer, realizing that running the Future Movement remotely is useless. (Photo: Archive)…

Police ordered to end Cairo sit-ins
BBC 31 Jul 2013 – Egypt’s military-backed cabinet orders police to end sit-ins by supporters of ousted President Morsi, saying they are a national security threat.

UN to probe Syria chemical weapons
BBC 31 Jul 2013 – United Nations inspectors will go to Syria to visit three sites where chemical weapons are suspected of being used, a spokesman says.

Gaddafi minister sentenced to death
BBC 31 Jul 2013 – A Libyan court sentences a minister in the government of Muammar Gaddafi to death for inciting violence during the country’s 2011 civil war.

Livni urges Israel support for talks
BBC 31 Jul 2013 – Israel’s peace negotiator, Tzipi Livni, calls on parties in its coalition government to support the latest round of direct talks with the Palestinians.

Tunisia cabinet hit by resignation
BBC 31 Jul 2013 – Tunisia’s Education Minister Salem Labyedh has resigned following the assassination of opposition MP Mohamed Brahmi, the prime minister’s office has said.

Kuwait emir pardons insult convicts
BBC 30 Jul 2013 – The emir of Kuwait Sabah al-Sabah announces a pardon for all those convicted of insulting him on the occasion of the last 10 days of Ramadan.


What the appointment of Martin Indyk as US special envoy tells us
Richard Falk, AlJazeera.com7/30/2013
Appointing the former ambassador to Israel for Israel-Palestine negotiations was nothing beyond the usual status quo.
It was to be expected. It was signalled in advance. And yet it is revealing.
The only other candidates considered for the job were equally known as Israeli partisans: Daniel Kurtzer, former ambassador to Israel before becoming Commissioner of Israel’s Baseball League and Dennis Ross, co-founder in the 1980s (with Indyk) of the AIPAC-backed Washington Institute for Near Eastern Policy who handled the 2000 Camp David negotiations on behalf of Clinton.
The winner among these three was Martin Indyk, former ambassador to Israel (1995-97; 2000-01), onetime AIPAC employee, British born, Australian educated American diplomat.
Does it not seem strange for the United States, the convening party and the unconditional supporter of Israel, to rely exclusively for diplomatic guidance in this concerted effort to revive the peace talks on persons with such strong and unmistakable pro-Israeli credentials?
What is stranger, still, is that the media never bothers to observe this peculiarity of a negotiating framework in which the side with massive advantages in hard and soft power, as well as great diplomatic leverage, needs to be further strengthened by having the mediating third-party so clearly in its corner. Is this numbness or bias? Are we so used to a biased framework that it is taken for granted, or is it overlooked because it might spoil the PR effect if mentioned out loud?
John Kerry, the Secretary of State, whose show this is, dutifully indicated when announcing the Indyk appointment that success in the negotiations will depend on the willingness of the two sides to make “reasonable compromises”. But who will decide on what is reasonable?….more..e-mail

Israeli-Palestinian negotiations: why now?
Nassar Ibrahim, Alternative Information Center7/31/2013
Why did the PA agree to resume peace negotiations with Israel when its oft-stated conditions of a settlement freeze and acknowledging the 1967 borders as the basis for talks were not met? How can we judge if the negotiations are a success and should they fail, what possible reactions may ensue? Nassar Ibrahim explores.
Direct peace talks between Palestinians and Israelis are slated to begin Monday, following yesterday’s decision by the Israeli government to release 104 pre-Oslo Palestinian prisoners and preceded by months of intensive shuttle diplomacy by US Secretary of State John Kerry. The welcome prisoner release notwithstanding, why did Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas agree to restart negotiations now, as he has previously stated on a number of occasions that there would be no renewal of negotiations without a settlement freeze and declaration of the 1967 borders as the basis for talks. With Israel offering none of these assurances, other motives must then be at play for Palestinian representatives to agree to enter into a new round of negotiations.
At this particular juncture, and within the broader political context of the region, Palestinian representatives believe that two current circumstances count in their favour and are conducive to a stronger political position vis-a-vis the Israelis.
Firstly, with the fall of Mohammed Morsi in Egypt and the Syrian National Coalition s(SNC) failure to overthrow Bashar al-Assad, Abbas considers the U.S. position in the Middle East to be somewhat precarious.Because of these strategic failures and the sudden fall from grace of the U.S backed poster-boys of neoliberal capitalism in the Middle East – fronted by the Muslim Brotherhood – Fatah representatives are under the impression that the U.S. needs these negotiations to reassert its position of power and influence in the region. As such they believe that, coming from this position of political necessity and strategic survival in the Middle East, the U.S. is more likely to respond positively to some of their demands, or at least to respond less negatively.more..e-mail

Gaza on the regional decision-makers negotiating table
Dr. Adnan Abu Amer, Middle East Monitor (MEMO)7/30/2013
In light of political developments in Egypt and the international and regional support the coup has received, it has become clear that the United States’ current policy is to support the status quo.
This imposes an economic and political isolation on the Gaza Strip which strips it of its legitimacy and Hamas of its authority.
Although Palestinian, Arab, international, and before that, Israeli circles, counted on the isolation of Gaza and support for the West Bank, economically and politically, pushing the Gazans to overthrow Hamas, the movement began to grow and became more powerful. Israel came to effectively abandon its goal of toppling the movement after the 2009 and 2012 wars, for fear of the chaos that would arise if Hamas was overthrown.
There have been growing convictions within these circles of the need to admit defeat in having failed to isolate Gaza, pushing them to adopt a new social, economic and political strategy to weaken Hamas’ grip on Gaza. Perhaps the most important measures they have taken have been to encourage Israel and the Palestinian Authority to re-establish connections with Gaza, to increase the amount of trade allowed from the territory and to re-open trade with the West Bank.
Indeed, some circles believe it is possible to steer Gaza’s economy away from the tunnel trade with Egypt, after it was closed some weeks ago, by allowing Gazans to open a trade corridor through Israel. The corridor would be subject to the same security as current imports and would allow the flow of goods between Gaza and the West Bank.
In addition to this there has been talk recently, of encouraging Israel to work with the PA to re-establish the suspended transit corridor, allowing Gazans to visit the West Bank and vice versa.
However, the Israeli government, the US and some of their Arab allies consider these measures an unjustified reward or the beginning of greater interaction with Hamas….more..e-mail

The EU s Anti-Hezbollah Move
Franklin Lamb, Damascus, CounterPunch7/31/2013
An admittedly quick survey of Damascus based analysts and political factions reveal only contempt for last week s EU vote adding the military wing of Hezbollah to its terrorist blacklist. During discussions which included normally reliable political commentators here think it won t have much impact on the growing Resistance forces and amounted to essentially a feel good public relations stunt egged on by Washington and London.
It may well have seemed like a fine idea at the European Union s Foreign Ministers cocktail reception in Brussels, where ample alcohol freely flowed the night before last week s vote to blacklist the military wing of Hezbollah. But shortly after the vote the EU appeared to be experiencing a severe hangover as the stark reality of its impetuous decision began to soak in.
After periodical discussion of the US-Israel demand for blacklisting Hezbollah for more than a year, and adding its name to the EU list of 26 organizations and 11 individuals currently being designated as terrorists is in becoming clearer by the day the EU actions may not have been in anyone s interest except possibly Israel s.
It is true there was never much enthusiasm at EU HQ for taking the blacklisting step given some fundamental uncertainties of what it would mean in reality. But American and British pressure, and headlines from Israel screaming: We told you about rising anti-Semitism from Europe following the EU decision to blacklist illegal Zionist colonies implanted on the West Bank portion of occupied Palestine, weeks earlier. To round up EU votes, the US State Department staff designated to lobby the 28 EU foreign ministries also focused on the unproven Bulgaria bus attack, and Hezbollah s involvement in Syria as reasons to go along with the blacklisting decision which required a unanimous vote for the 28 EU countries foreign ministers.
Minutes after the EU vote, problems began to appear and it became obvious that buying into the US-UK Hezbollah military wing blacklisting project was not an attractive product after all.more..e-mail

Limited solidarity with Palestine in Schulman’s “Queer International”
Electronic Intifada: 31 Jul 2013 – Israel and Pinkwashing author s new book is an interesting read, but falls into some of the traps it ostensibly aims to criticize.more

Israeli army recruitment plan aims to incite Christian-Muslim tensions
Electronic Intifada: 31 Jul 2013 – Israel wants Palestinians to be weak, separate religious communities to divide and conquer, says Palestinian Christian activist.more

Palestine s South African Moment: Discussion with Haidar Eid
Palestine Chronicle: 31 Jul 2013 – By Ebbe Bertelsen In the winter months of 1987 a popular uprising erupted in Palestine. In what is known as the First Intifada, the Palestinian people rebelled against twenty years of occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip and forty years of apartheid, racial discrimination and humiliation in Israel. For six years mass demonstrations, strikes and university protests swept the country. Within these six years the iconic images of stone throwing boys facing military tanks went around the world. Haidar Eid is an active member of the Palestinian campaign for academic and cultural boycott of Israel and a professor of English Literature and Cultural Studies at al-Aqsa University in Gaza; he explains the significance of the First Intifada: Until the First Intifada the Palestinian question was completely marginalized in the international community. The uprising shattered the myth that Israel has the most moral army in the world. Here we…more

More material available from Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine/Israel –www.vtjp.org
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