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Cablegate: Jerusalem Media Reaction (11/18): America's Honeymoon

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DE RUEHJM #2052/01 3231010
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 181010Z NOV 08
FM AMCONSUL JERUSALEM
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3259
RHEHAAA/WHITE HOUSE WASHDC
RHEHNSC/WHITE HOUSE NSC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
RUEKJCS/DIA WASHDC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
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RUEAHQA/CSAF WASHINGTON DC//POLAD//
RHMFIUU/CMC WASHINGTON DC
RUENAAA/CNO WASHINGTON DC//POLAD//
INFO RUEHXK/ARAB ISRAELI COLLECTIVE
RUEHTU/AMEMBASSY TUNIS 7407
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 4387
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 4240
RUEHNC/AMEMBASSY NICOSIA 5734
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME 4156
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 2722

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 JERUSALEM 002052

SIPDIS

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 (11/18): AMERICA'S HONEYMOON
PERIOD

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Main Stories:
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The three papers lead with statements by Palestinian Authority
President Abbas after his meeting with Israel's Premier Olmert on
November 17 in Jerusalem. Olmert promised Abbas to release 250
Palestinian prisoners in early December to coincide with the Islamic
Eid al Adha holiday. Al Hayat Al Jadida notes that 11,000
Palestinians are in Israeli detention. The papers also report that
Olmert promised to freeze 3,000 demolition orders against
Palestinian houses located throughout the West Bank. Al Quds adds
that Abbas demanded Olmert halt all Israeli settlement activities in
the West Bank and urged him to work on sustaining the ceasefire with
Hamas and lifting the Gaza "siege." Al Ayyam reports that the
meeting did achieve agreement on the return of Palestinians who were
deported to Gaza by the Israeli Military after participating in the
Church of the Nativity stand-off in 2002. They will return to the
West Bank. Al Hayat Al Jadida publishes a photo of Abbas and Olmert
with their teams at the Jerusalem meeting.

Front pages highlight a second story about Palestinian Authority
President Abbas' meeting with British Foreign Minister Miliband in
Ramallah on November 17. In a press Conference with Miliband, Abbas
stated that, "partial agreements [with Israel] are not acceptable.
The only agreement to be made is a comprehensive peace deal."
Miliband reiterated a theme underscored at the Quartet meeting in
Egypt, that negotiations are irreversible. He called on Israel to
halt settlement activities and expected that 2009 will be a "very
important year," especially in light of the incoming U.S.
administration, and new Israeli government, and the ongoing peace
efforts by Abbas. Miliband added that UK laws prohibit favoring
products made in Israeli settlements. The three papers publish
front page photos of the two leaders in Ramallah.

Al Quds' front page reports statements made to AP by Palestinian
Authority (PA) Prime Minister Fayyad. Speaking before his November
17 meeting with British Foreign Minister Miliband, Fayyad called on
the E.U. to tighten restrictions on Israeli settlement products.
Fayyad continued that while the PA has thus far only made the demand
informally, the time has come to make an official request for such
restrictions, adding that peace talks have collapsed under the
pressure of Israeli settlement expansion. The paper notes that
Miliband has been lobbying E.U. countries to restrict Israeli
settlements products.

Al Hayat Al Jadida's front page publishes, under a lead photo of an
Israeli tank near Gaza statements made by Israeli Defense Minister
Barak that he is not ruling out the option of military action
against the Gaza Strip. The paper also quotes Israel's Foreign
Minister Livni stating that truce in Gaza has collapsed and blamed
Hamas for the collapse. Al Ayyam's front page reports that
Palestinians in Gaza fired homemade rockets on Israeli towns, with
two rockets hitting the southern Israeli city of Sderot.

Al Quds' front page reports that Israel allowed for the entry of
limited humanitarian assistance into Gaza. Thirty trucks crossed
into the Strip to deliver humanitarian assistance.

Al Ayyam and Al Hayat Al Jadida front page statements by Hamas
leader Haniyyah stating that Egypt's efforts for achieving internal
Palestinian unity have not failed and that Egypt is following up on
those efforts. Haniyah also highlighted the efforts of Arab League
Secretary General Amr Musa as proof of continuing Arab support to
internal Palestinian dialogue.

JERUSALEM 00002052 002 OF 002

Al Ayyam and Al Hayat Al Jadida's front pages report on statements
made by Palestinian Authority (PA) Information Minister Riyad Al
Malki warning against an escalation of Israeli actions in Gaza and
calling for parties to respect the existing truce there. Al Malki's
statements came following the weekly Palestinian Authority cabinet
meeting on November 17. Al Malki added that his government has
achieved success at the security level and continues to work for
greater law enforcement in the southern West Bank, building on
success in the north.

The Ma'an news network website reports that U.S. Under Secretary of
State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs James K. Glassman and
Palestinian Authority Minister of Youth and Sports Abu Daqqah
inaugurated the first Palestinian Center for Youth Development
Resources in Beita village near Nablus in the West Bank on November
17. Mr. Glassman said that he will never forget the sight of
Palestinian children at the event and added that the project was an
initiative by Secretary of State Rice to give hope and encourage
development opportunities for Palestinian youth, while also
assisting them to achieve peace.

------------
BLOCK QUOTES:
------------

1) Columnist Rajab Abu Sarayah opines in Al Ayyam under the title,
"Palestine, a victim of regional polarization" (11/18):
"Palestinians [should] craft their way to freedom by disengaging
from financial dependence... and should join the regional systems
[such as]... the Arab League and the Organization of the Islamic
Conference countries... this option would require a vigorous
struggle on the part of all Palestinians, not just those living in
the West Bank and Gaza or those divided and polarized by Fatah and
Hamas."

2) Jamil Matar writes in Al Quds under the title "America is in a
honeymoon period with the world" (11/18): "With Obama's victory,
[the world's] people have begun to lean towards loving America and
shy away from hating it. America has started, or should start, the
journey of changing its policies and behaviors and begin preparing
itself for a growing revolution in international expectations."

Walles

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
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