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Cablegate: Jerusalem Media Reaction (12/29):

VZCZCXRO6989
OO RUEHROV
DE RUEHJM #2332/01 3630804
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 290804Z DEC 09
FM AMCONSUL JERUSALEM
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 7131
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 8019
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 4986
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 4836
RUEHNC/AMEMBASSY NICOSIA 6324
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME 4755
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 3359

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 JERUSALEM 002332

SIPDIS

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 (12/29):
U.S. Letters of Guarantees and Condemnation of New Settlement Units
in East Jerusalem Dominate Local Press

-------------
Main Stories:
-------------Independent daily Al-Quds leads with news about U.S.
Special Envoy to the Middle East Mitchell's upcoming visit to the
region. According to the article, Mitchell will present "two
letters of guarantees to the PA and Israel" that could serve as the
framework to re-launch peace talks.

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PA Official daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida front pages news that the PA
denied having any information about the U.S. letters of guarantees.
PLO Chief Negotiator Saeb Erekat reiterated that if the US wants to
see resumption of negotiations, it has to force Israel to stop all
settlement activities. Erekat is quoted in independent daily
Al-Ayyam stating, "we need actions not statements or guarantees."

Al-Quds runs separate front page coverage of statements made by
Yossi Beilin, former Knesset member, that Israeli Prime Minister
Netanyahu is about to reach an agreement with the U.S.
administration regarding a two-year framework for resuming
negotiations with the Palestinians. Dailies report that Netanyahu
is in Egypt today to discuss with President Mubarak possibilities of
resuming negotiations with the Palestinians. Al-Quds quotes
Netanyahu saying that the time is now appropriate for achieving
peace.

Independent daily Al-Ayyam leads with the PA ministerial cabinet's
condemnation of the Israeli issuance of tenders for nearly 700 new
settlement units in Jerusalem. The PA reiterated that the new
construction projects jeopardize the two-state solution.

Dailies quote PA presidency spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeinah stating
that "any new Israeli tenders on occupied Palestinian land are
illegal" and that how the United States will respond to the new
tenders will test the credibility of the U.S. administration and the
seriousness of the GOI to achieving peace.

Dailies and independent news outlet Ma'an quote White House
Secretary Robert Gibbs' statement yesterday, that "the White House
opposes new Israeli construction in East Jerusalem...the status of
Jerusalem is a permanent status issue that must be resolved by the
parties through negotiations and supported by the international
community."

Dailies report that the PA ministerial committee assigned to pursue
the establishment of the Palestinian International Airport presented
its recommendations to the ministerial cabinet yesterday regarding
the best location for the airport. According to coverage, the
committee recommended locating the airport between Jericho and
Jerusalem.

Al-Quds reports that settlers of Yitzhar settlement near Nablus
stoned a Palestinian bus yesterday causing the bus overturn. Five
Palestinian passengers were hurt.

------------
BLOCK QUOTE:
------------Asad Abdel Rahman writing in Al-Quds under the title
"The State of Settlers and Netanyahu...What To Do" opines that
Netanyahu was never serious about the ten-month moratorium as can be
seen by the daily approval of new construction tenders and new

JERUSALEM 00002332 002 OF 002


units. Abdel Rahman comments that it is becoming more and more
obvious that Israeli is not serious about engaging in a real peace
ce
negotiations.


RUBINSTEIN

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