» 11/20/2007, 00.00
ISRAEL – PALESTINE
Abbas obtains the release of 441 Palestinians but no joint document from Olmert
Negotiations for a joint document to present at the Annapolis conference fails, attention now turns to the question of Arab nations and their level of participation. Arab League due to meet in Cairo Friday.
The release of 441 Palestinians – Mahmoud Abbas president of the PA had sought 2 thousand – and a non committal discourse on freezing the building of Israeli settlements in Palestinian territory, the promise to go to Annapolis with the intent of furthering the peace process. That is all that Abbas succeeded in achieving yesterday in his last meeting with Israeli premier Ehud Olmert ahead of the US conference in Annapolis at the end of the month. The principal aim of negotiations has been totally excluded, arrival at a common document.
The question now under consideration has become the participation of Arab Nations and their level of involvement. With that in mind Olmert may meet with Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak to reassure him of Israel’s intent to go to the conference open to concessions. For their part Arab League Foreign ministers – Palestinians included – are set to meet in Cairo Friday to deliberate on a common stance regarding requests put forward, while each individual state will independently decide whether to participate.
Yesterday, sources from the US state Department referred that the United States will send invitations to some Nations, which should include Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Syria. While the presence of the Egyptian Foreign Minister and a representative from Amman seem certain, it is not the case it appears for Damascus or Riyadh. Syria has made it known that it will attend the conference only if the issue of the Golan Heights is addressed – a strategic zone conquered by Israel in the 1967 war and later annexed – while Saudi Arabia has repeatedly said it will participate in the Annapolis summit only if crucial areas are on the agenda beginning with the creation of a Palestinian State. A question the Saudis need to address themselves is the absence of diplomatic relations with the Jewish State.
So far there is neither great hope or expectation. Underscoring this atmosphere is yesterdays’ declarations by the Palestinian Information Minister Riad El Malki, who announced that the PA intends asking Israel to re-open Palestinian institutions in Jerusalem, according to first phase of the old Road Map.
19/04/2007 ISRAEL – ARAB LEAGUE
Israeli delegation to travel to Jordan to discuss Arab League peace plan
Arab League tasks Jordan and Egypt to convince Jewish State to accept its plan. It will ask the UN, US, EU and Russia to back its initiative. Israel confirms its interest in the plan, but rejects any diktat.
09/07/2007 ISRAEL – ARAB LEAGUE
Arab League delegation visits Israel for the first time
The meeting, scheduled for Thursday, will give Arabs a chance to find out Israel’s attitudes towards the peace plan which includes recognition by the 22-member League of the Jewish state in exchange for a return to the pre-1967 border, the creation of a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital and a “just solution” the Palestinian refugee question.
27/03/2007 SAUDI ARABIA – ARAB LEAGUE
Some positive moves from Riyadh summit for Israel, not for Lebanon
The Arab League summit opens tomorrow as acceptance for Saudi peace plan increases. UN secretary general is expected. Lebanon will be represented by two delegations, a remarkable sign of the country’s division. Iraq might announce new steps on the path of national reconciliation.
02/08/2007 MIDDLE EAST – UNITED STATES
Abbas meeting last for Rice in her Mideast tour to launch US peace initiative
US secretary of state offers PNA president US$ 80 million in aid to reform Palestinian security services, but also asks him to deepen dialogue with Israel. She discusses Iran containment and Iraq security with Egypt and Gulf states.
27/11/2007 ISRAEL – PALESTINE – USA
Once again, hopes for peace
Annapolis begins. The possibilities for success depend on one simple factor: commitment to peace negotiations that are open and sincere regarding the key issues of Israeli withdrawal from occupied territories and the definition of the state of Palestinian refugees. An invitation to avoid Oslo’s “errors”, when the “process” overshadowed the “peace”. The need to resolve the “Jerusalem problem”.
VATICAN - USA
Pope to Trump: America’s greatness is measured by its attention to the poor
Pope Francis exalts the "rich spiritual and ethical values that have shaped the history of the American people” and the nation’s “commitment to the advancement of human dignity and freedom worldwide ". Concerns " for the poor, the outcast and those in need who, like Lazarus, stand before our door ". The oath Trump preceded by various prayers of Catholic, Protestant, Jewish Representatives. The slogan "America first" will guide political choices. String criticism of the establishment. China’s caution and the enthusiasm of the president of Taiwan.
CHINA - UNITED STATES
The Trump era begins: The China-US relationship and the risk of war
As the inauguration ceremony of the Trump presidency approaches, the Propaganda Bureau of the Chinese Communist Party has banned all journalists from “unauthorized criticism" of Trump’ words and deeds. According to the great dissident Wei Jingsheng there is a chance that Trump will force China into fair trade deals, possibly leading to political and legal reforms. A trade war is an option.
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