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Cablegate: Jerusalem Media Reaction (12/02): Eu Recognition of East

VZCZCXRO5011
OO RUEHROV
DE RUEHJM #2161/01 3360802
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 020802Z DEC 09
FM AMCONSUL JERUSALEM
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 6817
RHEHAAA/WHITE HOUSE WASHDC
RHEHNSC/WHITE HOUSE NSC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
RUEKJCS/DIA WASHDC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RUEADWD/DA WASHINGTON DC//DAS-ZD/DACS-ZK//
RUEAHQA/CSAF WASHINGTON DC//POLAD//
RHMFIUU/CMC WASHINGTON DC
RHMFIUU/CNO WASHINGTON DC//POLAD//
INFO RUEHXK/ARAB ISRAELI COLLECTIVE
RUEHTU/AMEMBASSY TUNIS 7973
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 4940
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 4790
RUEHNC/AMEMBASSY NICOSIA 6278
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME 4709
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 3313

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 JERUSALEM 002161

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STATE PASS BBG
STATE FOR NEA, NEA/IPA, NEA/PPD
WHITE HOUSE FOR PRESS OFFICE, SIT ROOM
NSC
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 (12/02): EU Recognition of East
Jerusalem as Capital Welcomed as Jerusalemite Home is Occupied by
Settlers

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Main Stories:
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Independent daily Al-Quds leads with news that European Union is
considering acknowledging East Jerusalem as the capital of the
Palestinian state. The article reports the EU will recognize East
Jerusalem as the capital of the Palestinian state its next Foreign
Ministers meeting scheduled for December 7.

Dailies and Maan report Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu's statement
that the settlement moratorium in the West Bank is in fact only a
"one-time, temporary" standstill. According to the articles,
Netanyahu excluded 2500 units which are under construction and 500
other units that were approved recently. Netanyahu is quoted in
independent daily Al-Ayyam expressing hope that the Palestinians
accept a resumption of peace negotiations.

Dailies and independent news outlet Maan report that a group of
Israeli settlers occupied the sealed house of Rifka Al-Kurd in the
East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah at 10am on Tuesday,
after obtaining an order from the Israeli Conciliatory Court that
gave the settlers permission to assume possession of the house.
Hatem Abdul Qader, Fatah official for Jerusalem Affairs, said that
his office submitted a petition to the Israeli Central Court
appealing the Conciliatory court order and that the appeal will be
discussed by noon today.

News of the prisoner exchange deal receives front page coverage in
the dailies. Palestinian Authority official daily Al-Hayat
Al-Jadida quotes a Hamas official as saying that the talks have
reached an "irreversible stage." Al-Quds notes that the
disagreement between Hamas and Israel is over 50 names including
Ahmad Sa'dat, Marwan Barghouti, senior Hamas leaders and 3 female
prisoners.

Al-Quds and Maan report that Prime Minister Fayyad was ranked among
the top 100 Global Thinkers for this year by the American Foreign
Policy magazine.
Citing AFP, Al-Ayyam runs front page coverage of President Obama's
expected announcement to send 30,000 soldiers to Afghanistan in next
6 months. Thus far, there has been no additional media coverage or
local reaction to the speech.
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BLOCK QUOTES:
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1) Al-Quds runs an editorial entitled "Will the World's Silence
Towards our Cause be Transformed into Positive Actions?" in which it
says that the EU initiative deserves support to empower and enable
it in the face of Israeli pressures, which so far have obstructed
American efforts. According to the writer, taking serious actions
to end Israeli occupation is the only way to achieve stability and
security in the Middle East and throughout the world.

2) Hani Habib writing in Al-Ayyam under the title "Sweden Draws the
Identity of the Palestinian State!!" opines that while the US has
reversed its commitment regarding a full cessation of settlement as
a precondition for resuming peace negotiations, Europe has
progressed. In his opinion although the European position will not

JERUSALEM 00002161 002 OF 002


replace a clear US position, it will certainly help.

3) Adel Abdel Rahman writing in Al-Hayat Al-Jadida under the title
"The European Decision" states that despite the importance of
European attempt to recognize East Jerusalem as the capital of the
Palestinian state, the decision will not change anything on the
ground because it doesn't oblige Israel to adhere to international
laws. He argues that more concrete efforts must be exerted.

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