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Cablegate: Jerusalem Media Reaction (8/29): Peace Negotiations -

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TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 2661
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UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 JERUSALEM 001621

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STATE PASS BBG
STATE FOR NEA, NEA/IPA, NEA/PPD
WHITE HOUSE FOR PRESS OFFICE, SIT ROOM
NSC FOR ABRAMS
CMC WASHINGTON DC FOR POLAD

JERUSALEM ALSO FOR ICD
LONDON FOR HKANONA AND POL - TSOU
PARIS ALSO FOR POL
ROME FOR MFO

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL KMDR KPAL KWBG KPAO IS
SUBJECT: JERUSALEM MEDIA REACTION (8/29): PEACE NEGOTIATIONS -

REFUGEES AND INTERNAL PALESTINIAN DIVIDES

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Main Stories:
-------------
With large, above-the-fold photos of the Palestinian Authority (PA)
President, Mahmoud Abbas, and the Lebanese President, Michel
Suleiman, the three dailies lead with news about Abbas' visit to
Lebanon on August 28 and his meeting with Suleiman at the
Presidential Palace in Lebanon. During his visit, Abbas confirmed
that he agrees with Lebanon's position of rejecting the permanent
resettlement of Palestinians in Lebanon, stating that the
Palestinian refugees in Lebanon have the right of return.

The three dailies front-page a DBA report about Egypt's intention to
send experts and security advisers to the Gaza Strip if the
comprehensive Palestinian national dialogue succeeds. According to
the report, this Egyptian assistance will help to stabilize and
normalize conditions throughout the Gaza Strip. In related coverage
in Al-Quds, Fatah confirmed in a report issued on August 28 its
support for Egyptian efforts to bridge the gap between the
Palestinian factions and reunite the Palestinian homeland.

The three dailies report that Israel reopened the three commercial
crossing points in the Gaza Strip on August 28: Sofa, Karni and
Nahal Oz. This decision came in response to a request from Egypt
that the crossings be re-opened before the start of the holy month
of Ramadan.

The three dailies highlight news about the departure of the two
"Free Gaza" boats from the Gaza Strip on August 28. According to
these reports, the boats will take to Cyprus one Palestinian family
(a mother and 4 children) who have Cypriot citizenship, as well as a
child requiring medical treatment travelling with his father.

Citing different agencies, all dailies report that eleven
Palestinians were injured on August 28 during clashes with Israeli
soldiers during a demonstration close to areas of land that Israel
plans to confiscate in order to establish a "separation wall" in
Ni'lin village, near Ramallah.

Al-Hayat Al-Jadida covers news about an agreement signed between the
Palestinian Authority and the German government on August 28.
According to the agreement, the German government will donate $5
million for the establishment of five police stations in the Jenin
governorate.

Citing Wafa, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida reports that Hamas took over the
Al-Nuseayrat municipality in the Gaza Strip on August 28, dismissed
its [Fatah] mayor and village counselor, and appointed other Hamas
members in their stead.

Al-Hayat Al-Jadida cites an AFP report that the father of the
Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who has been held captive by Hamas
since 2006, accused the Israeli government in an August 28th
interview on Israeli Radio of not making maximum efforts to release
his son.

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BLOCK QUOTES:
------------
1. Independent Al-Quds runs an editorial entitled, "The Return and
not the Permanent Resettlement" (8/29): "[T]he declarations of the
[Palestinian Authority] President Mahmoud Abbas in Beirut
confirm...that the Palestinian refugees object to the idea of
permanent resettlement [in Lebanon]...and that their only goal is to

JERUSALEM 00001621 002 OF 002


return to their homeland, Palestine. And, since their return cannot
be achieved unless there is an intensive and continuous Arab and
international effort, the Arab brothers must take on this role and
make use of their high positions in the international arena to
achieve their return...[P]utting pressure on the Palestinian
refugees and making their lives hell is not the appropriate solution
and will prevent their resettlement. It can even increase
complications and lead to more encounters and violence which
threatens the internal Arab peace... "
2. Al-Ayyam runs an editorial by a regular columnist, Muhammad
Yaghi, entitled, "This is not the time for Reconciliation" (8/29):
"[I]t seems that there are enormous pressures on the Palestinian
side to achieve a political agreement with Israel before the end of
Bush's presidency. The American President, who discovered the
Israeli-Palestinian conflict too late, seems to insist on adding his
touch on this conflict, and gave [the Palestinians] ideas such as
making the reform of the Palestinian Authority a priority above the
negotiation process. And, he gave Israel promises and guarantees on
the Palestinian rights' account. Now, we...are worried about Rice's
declarations that the issues are being discussed... regardless of
the pressures, we trust that these pressures will not be heard by
anyone. The current Palestinian [internal] situation does not allow
for any political agreement with Israel. Even if [an agreement]
happens, in view of this current division and conflict, it will not
be the start of the end of occupation. On the contrary, it will set
up a Palestinian-Palestinian conflict..."

WALLES

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