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October 10, 2015 / 27 Tishri, 5776
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Posts Tagged ‘Cairo’

US Secy of State John Kerry Returns to Region

Tuesday, October 7th, 2014

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is set to return to the region by the end of the week.

Kerry will participate in a conference focused on “rebuilding Gaza,” to be held in Cairo on October 12, according to State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki.

Last Thursday the Palestinian Authority unity government called on world leaders to provide $4 billion to rebuild the enclave.

Many areas were battered by Israeli air strikes targeting weapons factories and hidden rocket launchers – deliberately placed by Hamas and other terror groups among Gaza civilian residential population centers.

Israel launched its counter terror Operation Protective Edge in July to stop the constant rocket fire from Gaza terrorists who aimed their missiles and other ordnance at civilians in southern Israeli towns and cities.

The United States last month said it would boost the rehabilitation effort in Gaza with an additional $71 million in emergency aid to the region, bringing its total funding since the start of the war to more than $118 million.

But although the PA unity government claims that $1.9 billion is needed for public and private infrastructure repais, and $1.2 billion is needed for “reactivating economic productivity,” these figures need to be scrutinized.

First of all, there is still a highly complex network of smuggler tunnels that lies beneath the ground level of Gaza. Much of the construction material previously allowed in to the region for the purpose of building “infrastructure” — as well as houses, hospitals and other badly needed structures — obviously was instead instantly diverted to military use. Billions of dollars gone astray there.

Ditto for other “dual use” supplies such as metal piping and other materials redirected instead towards the manufacture of missiles, rockets and mortar shells.

Endless funds have been poured into the enclave by the United States, European nations and other well-meaning, wealthy donors – only to leave Gaza residents as poor as ever, forever dependent upon the self-perpetuating United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA).

“Basic necessities like food, clean water and fuel remain in short supply throughout the territory,” the State Department warned in a statement last month. But legitimate desalination plants and sewage treatment plants were not built in Gaza because the materials with which to build them were always being stolen by the ruling Hamas terrorist organization for use in building up its military structure.

Fuel, food and clean water has been shipped in on a weekly basis throughout the entire summer and right up to the current day, via the overland crossings from Israel, even at times under rocket and mortar fire. Each was documented by the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT). So basics are not the issue. Perhaps the State Department should question Hamas.

When the shipments do not go through, it is because the ruling Hamas terror group chooses to block the transfer. When they do go through, they “sometimes” never make it to the warehouse — or when they make it to the warehouse, they are sometimes “redistributed” elsewhere rather than to their intended target families.

Hamas is known to steal supplies and keep its own fighters fed, first and foremost. It has no problem starving its citizens for the purpose of winning a pitiful international “photo op.”

That, without a single murmur from Mahmoud Abbas, head of the Palestinian Authority unity government that partners with Hamas and whose own Fatah military wing, the Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, joined in with the rocket fire aimed at Israel from Gaza during this summer’s war.

By the way, the first meeting of the PA unity government is set to be held this Thursday in Gaza.

Death of Hebron Killers Apparently No Obstacle to Cairo Talks

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014

Gaza’s ruling Hamas terrorist organization says it will continue with negotiations in Cairo over a permanent cease-fire with Israel.

The news follows the news that two Hamas terrorists were killed in a shootout with IDF soldiers during an attempt to arrest them late Monday night in Hebron.

Amar Abu Aisha and Marwan Kawasmeh were killed after they opened fire when the soldiers who tried to take them into custody. The two were accused of abducting and murdering three Israeli teens – Eyal Yifrach, Naftali Frenkel and Gilad Sha’ary – as they hitchhiked home from yeshiva for the Sabbath on June 12, 2014, in Gush Etzion.

“We condemn the assassination of Amar Abu Aisha and Marwan Kawasmeh, and view it as an Israeli attempt to backtrack from a truce agreement,” said Izzat al-Risheq, a senior Hamas official living abroad. A second Hamas leader confirmed the Palestinian Authority unity government delegation had decided to proceed with the Cairo talks. Funerals for the two are to be held sometime Tuesday following afternoon prayers, according to media reports.

Israel’s delegation reportedly arrived in Cairo early on Tuesday.  Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s spokespereson Mark Regev declined to confirm or deny the report.


Cairo Cease-fire Talks Moved Up in Deference to Jewish Holidays

Sunday, September 21st, 2014

Cease-fire negotiations in Cairo between Israel and Gaza terrorist factions were moved up to Tuesday this week in deference to the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashana.

Israel has confirmed it will send a delegation to the Egyptian capital to resume talks over a permanent cease-fire with Gaza’s ruling Hamas terrorist organization and other allied terrorists.

The main demand that will be brought to the table by Israel at this point is the requirement that Gazans be disarmed – the one issue that is likely to torpedo the talks altogether, since Hamas and its allies are refusing to lay down their weapons.

Hamas, meanwhile, is demanding the construction of a seaport and airport, both of which would constitute immediate, free import of sophisticated weaponry from Iran and other major international military backers. In the past Israel has not agreed to this condition.

In addition, Hamas is demanding that Israel free hundreds of terrorist prisoners in exchange for the bodies of IDF soldiers 2nd Lt. Hadar Goldin and 1st Sgt. Oron Shaul, o.b.m. Both fell in the line of duty this summer while fighting in Israel’s counter terror Operation Protective Edge in Gaza.

Ahead of the cease-fire talks, Egypt is also hosting negotiations between Hamas and its rival in the Palestinian Authority unity government, the Fatah faction led by PLO Chairman Mahmoud Abbas.

Israel’s Ambassador Presents Credentials in Egypt

Monday, September 15th, 2014

A new Israeli ambassador to Egypt presented his credentials to President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi on Sunday, perhaps heralding the start of a new era as well. There has been no Israeli ambassador in Cairo since Israel’s embassy was torn apart by a rioting mob in September 2011.

Ambassador Chaim Koren presented his credentials in a ceremony at the presidential palace in Cairo. In his previous post, Koren served as Israel’s first ambassador to the emerging state of South Sudan.

He technically began serving as Israel’s ambassador to Egypt three months ago, working from his personal residence in Cairo. Since he has yet to find an office in the nation’s capital, he will continue to work from his residence there for the time being.

Israel’s government was encouraged by Egypt’s acceptance of Koren’s credentials and saw it as a sign of good relations between the two nations, the foreign ministry said in a statement.

As a follow up, government officials “would be pleased if Egypt were to instruct their ambassador to return to Israel,” said a diplomatic source quoted by the Hebrew-language NRG news site.

Egypt played a major role in mediating the current cease-fire between Gaza terrorist factions and Israel.

Qatar Expels Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood Leadership

Sunday, September 14th, 2014

Qatar is reportedly attempting to heal its strained relations with Egypt and others in the region by expelling some members of the Muslim Brotherhood – the organization that spawned Hamas and other terrorist organizations — who have made their home base in Doha since being kicked out of Cairo.

The secretary-general of the organization, Mahmoud Hussein, is among those who were asked by the monarchy to leave. Also on the list were former Egyptian minister Amr Darrag, and cleric Wagdi Ghoneim, according to the Rassad news agency, which said the group is seeking another headquarters in exile, possibly Turkey.

Ambassadors from Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates all were recalled from Qatar by their governments in June to protest Doha’s support for the Muslim Brotherhood and its associated terror groups. All view the organization to be a threat to the region, and to their nations individually as well.

Turkey, however, has long been a firm supporter of the group and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been vocal in his praise for Gaza and its Hamas rulers.

Egypt outlawed the Muslim Brotherhood after repeated violent riots following the coup that deposed former President Mohammed Morsi, backed by the group.

Fatah, Hamas Preparing Groundwork to Dissolve Palestinian Authority Unity Govt

Sunday, September 7th, 2014

Ramallah-based PLO Chairman and Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas hinted during a three-day visit to Cairo this weekend he is close to ending the latest Palestinian Authority “unity government” with Hamas.

Hamas, meanwhile, warned that Abbas should keep his debates out of the media spotlight. “Abbas’s remarks against Hamas and the resistance are unjustified and the sources of information and figures he relied on were incorrect and have nothing to do with the truth,” Hamas spokesperson Sami Abu Zukhri told the Bethlehem-based Ma’an news agency.

Abbas told media that more than 850 Hamas members and their family members were killed in this summer’s Operation Protective Edge – figures similar to those quoted by Israel.

On Saturday, Abbas told Egyptian reporters in Cairo that he is strongly inclined to end his unity deal with Gaza’s leadership unless the terrorist entity can make its peace with the idea of having a single government in leadership.

“If Hamas will not accept a Palestinian state with one government, one law and one weapon, then there will not be any partnership between us,” Abbas told reporters at a briefing. “This is our condition, and we will not back away from it.

“There are 27 under secretaries of ministries who are running the Gaza Strip, and the national consensus government (unity government) cannot do anything on the ground,” Abbas said. It was his most blunt statement of powerlessness yet, making it clear that Hamas has yet to relinguish any authority over the region. That, despite the fact that the so-called “unity government” actually includes Hamas, although its ministers are technically “unaffiliated” technocrats.

“We will only talk to Hamas if they meet our requirements,” Abbas continued. “The partnership with Hamas depends on arms being under the control of the Palestinian state…” The latter is a direct reference to the fact that Hamas has repeatedly insisted on controlling the armed forces of the PA – some 3,000 fighters, to this point led by Hamas military wing Izz a-Din al-Qassam chief Mohammed Deif, who may have been killed by Israel during the recent Operation Protective Edge.

“[Hamas political bureau chief Khaled] Meshaal told me, ‘I’m the resistance leader and there will be no cease-fire without my agreement.’ One side cannot unilaterally declare war. That isn’t unity or reconciliation.”

Abbas also expressed exasperation with Hamas, asking how they could have been surprised by Israel’s rage, and military response to the abduction and murder of three teenage yeshival students, and rocket fire at civilians.

He also said he was fed up with Israel and the U.S. “Honestly, my patience with Israel, the United States and Hamas has expired,” he said.

Meanwhile, Hamas spokesman Hussam Badran told reporters there had been a “escalation in the number of summons and arrests (of Hamas members) in the West Bank,” allegedly for “no reason.” Hamas, meanwhile, has told its members not to cooperate with Fatah investigations in Judea and Samaria.

This is not the first time this has happened.

Within the year after the Palestinian Authority legislative elections of January 25, 2006, Abbas accused Hamas of running its own “shadow government.”

The Gaza-based terrorist organization at that time went to war with Fatah, seizing total control over the region by June 2007.

Countless broken “reconciliation” and “unity” deals later, Abbas has yet to woo Hamas back to the fold. Instead, Gaza has become a haven for every terrorist entity in the Middle East, with Iran as the region’s benevolent benefactor, along with Qatar and Turkey.

The closest Abbas came to any “unity deal” was this past spring, when he broke ties with Israel and reneged on every international agreement he had ever made. Fatah-linked terrorist groups were ecstatic, as were Gaza fighters – but not so blinded that they gave Fatah carte blanche entry to the region. Abbas has yet to be able to walk into Gaza safely, unguarded.

Ceasefire Decision Not Brought to Cabinet

Tuesday, August 26th, 2014

PM Netanyahu did not bring the ceasefire decision for a cabinet vote this evening, but decided on his own, apparently due to the probability that the cabinet would reject the cease fire agreement.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/ceasefire-decision-not-brought-to-cabinet/2014/08/26/

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