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WikiLeaks: 2009-04-20: 09JERUSALEM678: Jerusalem Media Reaction

by WikiLeaks. 09JERUSALEM678: April 20, 2009.

Posted: Monday, December 30, 2013 at 07:36 PM UT


Viewing cable 09JERUSALEM678, JERUSALEM MEDIA REACTION (04/20): PALESTINIANS: NEW

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Reference ID Created Classification Origin
09JERUSALEM678 2009-04-20 09:12 UNCLASSIFIED Consulate Jerusalem
VZCZCXRO3920
OO RUEHROV
DE RUEHJM #0678/01 1100912
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 200912Z APR 09
FM AMCONSUL JERUSALEM
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4680
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 7645
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 4621
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 4470
RUEHNC/AMEMBASSY NICOSIA 5964
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME 4385
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 2962
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 JERUSALEM 000678 
 
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 (04/20):  PALESTINIANS:  NEW 
ISRAELI GOVERNMENT NOT SERIOUS ABOUT PEACE 
 
------------- 
Main Stories: 
------------- 
Al-Ayyam leads with, Al-Quds and Al-Hayat Al-Jadida front page, that Israeli Defense Minister Barak favors proposing "a new initiative" for a comprehensive, regional peace, based in part on the Arab Peace Initiative.  According to coverage, Barak's initiative would include parallel talks with Palestinians and Syria.  In related news, Al-Ayyam's front page announces that Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu's visit to the U.S. will coincide with Palestinian Authority President Abbas' U.S. visit on May 18, 19. 
 
Al-Hayat Al-Jadida and Al-Ayyam front page reports about Special 
Envoy Mitchell's visit to Saudi Arabia on April 19.  According to coverage, Mitchell and Saudi King Abdullah discussed the 
Palestinian-Israeli conflict and the two-state solution based on the Arab Peace Initiative. 
 
Al-Quds leads with news of concern over "extremely dangerous" 
Israeli excavations that could damage the eastern wall of the Al 
Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem.  Head of the Al-Aqsa Mosque 
Construction Committee called for the formation of an Arab-Islamic committee to mobilize global support to oblige Israeli to respect international agreements and protect Arab patrimony in Jerusalem. 
In related news, front pages ran April 18, 19 coverage of "Israeli restrictions denying access to clergy men and worshippers at the Holy Sepulcher" church in Jerusalem on Orthodox Easter.  Reporting highlighted Palestinian Authority Presidency denunciation of, "the cruelty that reached its peak when Assyrian and Coptic clergymen were beaten by Israeli Police with batons in the Church's courtyard." 
 
Al-Quds front pages reports citing Israeli daily Haaretz on the U.S. call on Israel to halt evictions of Palestinian families in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of Jerusalem.  The story highlights that residents have lived in their homes for over 50 years and were visited by U.S. Consulate General, Jerusalem officials last week. The families' lawyer told press that Secretary Clinton is closely following the issue.  The report adds that the U.S. is also monitoring "settlement activities" in East Jerusalem and highlights Clinton's comments from her last visit to the region in which she noted that settlements and eviction policies not in keeping with the Road Map and "not helpful" to the peace process. 
 
Al-Quds front page cites DPA in noting that Israeli Premier 
Netanyahu has softened his stance on Palestinian recognition of 
Israel as a Jewish state.  In response to U.S. State Department 
pressure, reporting reveals that Netanyahu has dropped the demand as a precondition to talks with Palestinians but will insist that such recognition be part of any final peace agreement. 
 
All dailies report on the shooting in the leg of Hamas leader and former Palestinian Legislative Council member Hamid Al-Bitawi in Nablus on April 19.  According to coverage, a Palestinian Authority (PA) security force officer in civilian clothes used his personal weapon to shoot Bitawi.  The attack was condemned by a Nablus Governorate spokesperson who denied any involvement of the PA security forces, calling it a "personal" attack. 
 
-------------- 
Weekend Stories 
-------------- 
Sunday, April 19, 2009 
Al Quds' front page headlined, "Mitchell:  A two-state solution is 
 
JERUSALEM 00000678  002 OF 003 
 
 
the basis for ending the conflict," quoting the Special Envoy from his April 18 press availability with Egyptian Foreign Minister Abul Ghayt.  Mitchell's statement was quoted at length and Ghayt is noted explaining that Mitchell briefed Egyptian President Mubarak on meetings with officials in the region. 
 
Al Quds and Al Ayyam ran front page coverage on the meeting of 
Palestinian Authority (PA) President Abbas and Russian Deputy 
Foreign Minister Sultanov in Ramallah on April 18.  PA Foreign 
Minister Malki told reporters that Sultanov's visit was a follow up to Abbas' recent visit to Moscow and stated that talks focused on Israeli policies, including settlement activity, home demolitions and detentions. 
 
Al Ayyam's front page reported, "Egyptian troops amass on borders with Gaza."  Citing eye-witness reports, coverage noted a concentration of troops near the Rafah crossing. 
 
Saturday, April 18, 2009 
All Palestinian dailies ran similar front page headlines, "Abbas: All parties should abide by principle of two-state solution to end Palestinian-Israeli conflict- Mitchell: Comprehensive peace is in U.S. national interest, We are committed to two-state solution." 
Reporting noted that Special Envoy Mitchell after his April 17 
meeting with Palestinian Authority President Abbas, again stressed that the two-state solution is the only solution to the 
Palestinian-Israeli conflict.  Papers noted the, "announcement for the first time" by the current U.S. administration that a 
comprehensive regional peace is in the U.S. national interest and the interest of Palestinians, Israelis and the peoples of the whole region.  Papers also quoted PLO chief negotiator Erekat welcoming Mitchell's statements and commenting that, as Abbas has stated, the U.S. administration must now, "translate this vision into a realistic, political track."  Reports further quoted Mitchell from an April 17 statement made after meeting with the Egyptian Foreign Minister. 
 
Al Quds gave inside coverage to a statement released by 
Congresswoman Lowey's office about her delegation's visit to the 
Palestinian Territories and Israel.  Lowey was quoted stating that the visit "provided the opportunity to conduct oversight of U.S. foreign assistance and develop critical insight that will help the House Foreign Operations Subcommittee to evaluate President Obama's pending Supplemental Fiscal Year 2009 and Fiscal Year 2010 budget requests." 
-------------- 
BLOCK QUOTES: 
-------------- 
1) Al-Quds independent daily runs an editorial under the title 
"Threats and Dialogue" (04/20):  [media reports that] "Israel is 
waiting for U.S. permission to... attack [Iran] raise many 
questions, especially after President Obama's statements that he is willing to begin an open dialogue with Tehran based on mutual 
respect...  It is obvious that the Israel of today is the same as the Israel of the past.  It still threatens everyone with its 
military power, even when the new U.S. administration declares 
itself open to dialogue... if the U.S. and Europe are serious about achieving global peace, security and stability, they should intensify their regional efforts to stop these threats and introduce a new language of dialogue and international legitimacy." 
 
2)  Ghasan Zaqtan opines in Al-Ayyam independent daily under the 
title, "Another Smart Israeli" (04/20):  "Again a smart person 
[Premier Netanyahu]is in charge of the Israeli Government and is 
 
JERUSALEM 00000678  003 OF 003 
 
 
trying to come up with new ways to waste time and string out 
negotiations [with Palestinians] just like his predecessors have 
done, by calling for 'alternative initiatives' ... or adding another pre-condition to Palestinian-Israeli negotiations [recognition of Israel as a Jewish state], a demand that will only plunge negotiations into a vicious cycle and buy [Netanyahu] more time to proceed with his [real] plans." 
 
WALLES

 



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