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September 18, 2014 / 23 Elul, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Egypt’

Egypt Denies Offering Land for ‘Sinai State of Palestine’

Monday, September 8th, 2014

Egypt’s Foreign Ministry says President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi never offered the Palestinian Authority a chance to establish a new state in the Sinai Peninsula, according to i24 News.

On Monday morning, Israel Army Radio had reported the Egyptian president had made the suggestion to to Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) chairman and Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas earlier this week in Cairo.

The alleged proposal would have provided a tract of land 1,600 square kilometers (618 square miles) adjacent to Gaza, to “end the refugee story,” as Abbas told the Bethlehem-based Ma’an news agency.

The total area of the site – which would be controlled by the Palestinian Authority under Mahmoud Abbas — is five times the area of Gaza. According to Israel Army Radio, the proposal has a green light from the United States, and Israel’s Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was given a ‘heads up’ as well.

In exchange, the Palestinian Authority would end its demand for Israel to retreat to the 1949 Armistice Line – known internationally also as the “1967 border” after Israel won the 1967 Six Day War.

The broadcast report noted that el-Sisi reminded Abbas in their conversation that he is 80 years old. The Egyptian president allegedly warned the PA chairman that if he chose not to make history by accepting the proposal, “your successor will.”

Abbas, however, rejected the plan – much as his predecessor, former PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat once rejected a plan that would have given his people 97 percent of the territory in Judea and Samaria for which they have fought for so long.  Arafat instead insisted on holding out for land from Jerusalem, Israel’s eternal capital.

The Egyptian proposal is not really a new idea. In 1956, the Egyptian government proposed a similar concept. Then, too, it was rejected by the PLO.

“Now this is being proposed once again,” Abbas told a gathering of his Fatah faction in Ramallah on Sunday. “A senior leader in Egypt has said, ‘A refuge must be found for the Palestinians and we have all this open land.’ This was said to me personally. But it is illogical for the problem to be solved at Egypt’s expense. We won’t have it.”

The Egyptian Foreign Ministry claimed in its denial on Monday that the proposal was actually offered in the past by Muslim Brotherhood-backed former President Mohammed Morsi, deposed a year ago by el-Sisi.

Under the plan, Palestinian Authority-controlled cities in Judea and Samaria would remain autonomous and their residents would remain in their homes.

So-called “refugees” from abroad – who are now into the third and fourth and in some cases even fifth generations – could move to new homes in the proposed State of Palestine, adjacent to Gaza. There would be a considerable amount of seafront property in the tract being offered, enough for both real estate development, and for a port.

Just two main conditions were attached to the proposal: (1) the state be demilitarized, and (2) that cities in Judea and Samaria be autonomous, not the entire regions.

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.

Abbas Refused Offer to Resettle Refugees in Sinai

Thursday, September 4th, 2014

PA President Mahmoud Abbas has refused an offer by a senior Egyptian official to resettle “Palestinian refugees” in the Sinai, according to a report in the Middle East Monitor on Monday.

According to Abbas, the plan was first proposed in 1956 by Egypt, and was just put back on the the table again, in an attempt to help resolve the Arab-Israel conflict.

The idea was that the PA would receive a 618 square mile area adjacent to Gaza (the Gaza strip is 139 square miles) to resettle Arabs who claim refugee status. This would finally resolve the entire Palestinian refugee issue.

Abbas made it clear that he only wants to resettle refugees into Israel.

According to the report, Abbas proudly told the Fatah committee on Sunday that he refused the generous Egyptian offer to end the refugee problem.

Abbas said he refused the offer to settle them in the almost empty Sinai, as the plan “is absolutely unacceptable and the Palestinians will not accept it”.

Abbas clearly prefers to instead take money from the EU and the US to perpetuate the conflict.

Part of the PLO plan to eradicate Israel has always been founded on flooding Israel with “refugees”.

The refugees being referred to are primarily the 2nd and 3rd generation descendants of Arabs who were displaced from their homes when the Arab states attacked Israel in 1948.

At the time, the invading Arabs states told the Arabs in Israel to flee, so the invading armies could then wipe out the Jews unhindered. Others Arabs fled, thinking Israel would take revenge on them for what they did to the Jews over the years.

Most of these current “refugees”, and their parents, were born in Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and other Arab countries.

UNRWA (remember them?) has perpetuated these people as refugees instead of rehabilitating them in their birth countries, where in fact many of their grandparents and great grandparents also originated from before migrating into Israel looking for work, once the Jews began to rebuild the country’s economy.

No other UN agency passes on refugee status to descendants like UNRWA does.

During the post 1948 period, an equivalent number of Jews were also forced to flee the Arab countries they had called home for thousands of years, long before Islam came on the scene.

Many of those Jews moved to Israel, where they were fully integrated as Israeli citizens. These Jewish refugees and their descendants have not yet received financial compensation from the Arab countries they were forced to flee from.

In the early 1970s, Israel attempted to build modern housing projects to improve the living conditions of Arab refugee through resettlement and economic development. This plan was rejected by the Arab as they claimed that socio-economic solutions cannot solve the Palestinian problem.

For the Palestinian Authority, the refugee issue is a timebomb to be used to extend the conflict until they win.

 

Terror Tunnel Used to Attack Egyptian Soldiers Near Gaza

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

A terrorist tunnel was used to attack and kill 11 Egyptian soldiers Tuesday near the Gaza border town of Rafah, according to an Egyptian security source.  According to an Egyptian security source quoted by the Associated Press on Wednesday, an explosive device was planted in a tunnel beneath a main traffic artery in the town.

Two of the soldiers died immediately in the explosion, which at first appeared to be a roadside bomb. The other nine soldiers were shot as they tried to flee, the sources said. Two more soldiers were wounded, according to a report in the Egyptian newspaper Al-Youm al-Saba’a.

According to the report, the Al Qaeda-linked Ansar Beit al-Maqdis terrorist organization, based in Sinai, may be connected to the Islamic State. The group claimed responsibility for the attack on the 11 Egyptian soldiers.

In addition, the group has claimed responsibility for beheading four Egyptians last month. Four bodies that had been decapitated were found in the Sinai Peninsula; Ansar Beit al-Maqdis later said it had beheaded four Egyptians it believed were collaborating with Israel. It was the first time that beheading was made public in Egypt.

Links have also been found between Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood, which appear to have joined together in Egypt in attempts to topple the administration of President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, who deposed Muslim Brotherhood-backed former president, Mohammed Morsi, in July 2013.

Egyptian border police reported they destroyed eight new tunnels in the Sinai Peninsula, raising the total to 1,718 destroyed to this point, according to the Al Ahram newspaper.

On Wednesday, terrorists shot and killed a 32-year-old Egyptian off-duty police officer in northern Sinai Peninsula. The officer was walking home from work in the provincial capital of el-Arish when the gunmen opened fire, killing him on the spot. It is not clear which terrorist group was responsible for the attack.

On Monday, two jihadists died during a raid at a farm in Sinai whose owner was suspected of shooting at military aircraft, according to sources quoted by the Aswat Masriya website.

Mashaal Vows Cease-Fire a Step to New ‘Resistance’ War against Israel

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

Hamas’ supreme leader Khaled Mashaal dashed any hopes of long-term peace with Israel in a speech in Qatar on Thursday in which he shot from the hip at Israel and also at his terrorist organization’s new partner, the rival Fatah movement headed by Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas.

His lengthy speech in Qatar, which has financed Hamas terror and which fought Egyptian cease-fire proposals, followed by one day a “victory” speech by Ismail Haniyeh, the senior Hamas political leader in Gaza. Mashaal’s silence while Haniyeh accepted the cease-fire is a clear sign of a fierce power struggle between Hamas in Gaza and between Mashaal and Qatar, which holds the purse strings.

Mashaal also claimed victory, with lies that Hamas missiles hit the Ben Gurion Airport, which is not true, and that more than 5 million Israelis hid in bomb shelters, a gross exaggeration. However, there is no doubt that Hamas succeeded in scaring the daylight out of millions of Israelis, interrupting a few flights and generally turning half of Israel into sitting ducks.

And this won’t be the last time, regardless of a cease-fire, he warned.

“Whatever happened [in Gaza] is not the end to this story, and this is not the last operation to free Palestine. It was an important stop on the way to victory,” Mashaal declared.

His speech threw every obstacle possible on the road to negotiations with Israel. The talks are supposed to begin in a month, leaving open the possibility, or probability, that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is carrying on secret negotiations that will be formalized in 30 days.

The Prime Minister suffered another blow to any trust that Israelis may have for him with a report on Thursday that he met secretly with Jordanian King Abdullah, and perhaps Abbas, prior to the cease-fire, circumstantial evidence that Israel negotiated under fire, contrary to Netanyahu’s promise.

If Mashaal gets his way, there won’t be any talks because one of the new powers in Gaza is slated to be Abbas, whose security forces would patrol Gaza borders, according to the Egyptian proposal. That would provide Cairo with another tactic to get rid of Hamas.

Mashaal nailed Abbas to the wall in his speech, accusing him of throwing cold water on the resumption of the intifada during the war by allowing his security forces to limit protests.

“The next operation needs to use all of the Palestinian capabilities, not just part of them,” Mashaal said. “The resistance is holy and weapons are holy. There is no such thing as a country without weapons.”

A country or not, Gaza still has at least 2,000 rockets as well as anti-tank rockets and presumably anti-aircraft missiles. It still has rocket factories, one of which was filmed in production by Hamas during one of the failed cease-fires during the war.

Netanyahu had demanded that any halt in violence would be accompanied by disarming Hamas, but this week’s cease-fire only left the issue to be put on the negotiating table, along with Hamas’s demands for a deep-sea port and an airport.

Mashaal’s speech was full of hate and crude accusations that Israel inflicted a “Holocaust” on Gaza by “destroying schools and hospitals,” which all but the most extreme anti-Israel media now know were used by Hamas as rocket launching and terrorist command centers.

“We are against what Hitler did to the Jews, and Israel committed a second Holocaust in Gaza. Israel is an embarrassment to Jews and to the entire world,” according to Mashaal.

His rhetoric was aimed at Abbas as well as Israel. If and when negotiations begin, Egypt and the United States will be on the side of Abbas, who despite his unity government with Hamas has proved politically smart by a patient and single-minded tactic of using international support to slowly but surely win concession after concession from Israel until there is nothing left to negotiate.

Netanyahu Tries to Sell Bill of Goods that Israel Won Goals in the War

Wednesday, August 27th, 2014

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu gave a miserable sales pitch to the Israeli people Wednesday night in a weak effort to turn around public opinion that is unhappy, if not disgusted, with his agreeing to the cease-fire announced by Hamas and its new war partner, Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas.

The Prime Minister, followed by Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon and IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantzת repeated over and over Israel’s achievements in the war

Netanyahu claimed that Israel achieved the goals it set from the beginning, mainly to restore quiet to Israel and to destroy terror tunnels.

He also rewrote his promise earlier this month that there will no cease-fire without disarming Hamas. Magically, that now has become a “long-term” goal.

He buried that promise among the insistence that “Hamas did not get one demand” that it made before the cease-fire.

Netanyahu listed Hamas’ demands as a deep-sea port, an airport, freeing terrorists who were released in the delay of the return of Gilad Shalit and then were re-arrested for returning to terror, mediation of Turkey and Qatar in cease-fire talks.

And what happened to his position that Israel would not negotiate under fire?

Technically, Netanyahu kept its word. Israel negotiators were recalled from Cairo every time Hamas broke a cease-fire and resume rocket fire on Israel.

But negotiations do not require face-to face discussions. Does Netanyahu want everyone to believe that Israel was not updated on the Egyptian-brokered plan and Hamas’s reactions?

Does he really want everyone to believe that Hamas and the Palestinian Authority announced the cease-fire without knowing that Israel would accept it?

And if indeed that is what happened and the cease-fire simply fell on Israel out of the blue, Prime Minister Netanyahu’s acceptance only shows how destructively passive he was, failing to seize the last days of the war to make demands.

More likely, the United States was involved. U.S. State Dept. spokeswoman Jen Psaki said yesterday that Kerry and his point man in the Middle East, Frank Lowenstein, were in constant contact with Netanyahu.

She said the United States was not an active participant in the talks but was part of the action, in one way or the other.

Netanyahu hammered away at all of the achievements that are well-known – the destruction of terror tunnels, the relentless attacks on hundreds of Hamas command centers, rocket launchers and weapons factories and storerooms.

Approximately 1,000 terrorists were killed in the war.

Israel’s successes in the war cannot be pooh-poohed. Hamas indeed was dealt a crippling blow. Hamas knows very well that the days are over when it can lob mortar shells and launching rockets at the Gaza Belt without a fierce retaliation.

However, the Israeli public, including the influential center and center-left in Tel Aviv, no longer trusts agreements with Arabs and does not trust the Israeli government, no matter who is charge, to walk out of diplomatic negotiations without opened up the chicken barn for the foxes.

“Hamas is isolated politically, and we received legitimacy in the international community,” Netanyahu insisted. He said that Israel won solid backing in the international community, and that is true – today. And maybe tomorrow.

By next week, it will have evaporated into thin air, and once again there will be international demands that Israel make peace by diplomatic suicide.

One of the most disturbing statements at the press conference was made by Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon, who boasted that it will take Hamas 10 years to re-build.

So what do we have? A 10-year respite before the next war?

Netanyahu noted that Israel has allegedly enjoyed peace and quiet in the north since the cease-fire that ended the Second Lebanon War in 2006.

PMO: ‘No Negotiations Under Fire. Period.’

Tuesday, August 26th, 2014

The prime minister’s office on Tuesday morning categorically denied any involvement in cease-fire talks in Cairo or anywhere else at this time.

There are no Israeli negotiators in Cairo, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s spokesman Mark Regev told JewishPress.com. Israel will not negotiate under fire.

“There is no one in Cairo. Negotiators are back in Israel, and have been since the fighting has started (again). The Cairo talks were suspended because they broke the cease-fire,” Regev stated.

“Israel will not negotiate under fire,” he said.

The statement comes in stark contradiction to numerous media reports Tuesday of a possible cease-fire agreement advanced by Egypt, and allegedly “found acceptable” by the Hamas terrorist organization.

Disinformation and misinformation is part and parcel of the tools of the trade in Arab terrorist warfare against Israel.

Egypt is, according to Arab media reports, simply “waiting for Israel’s reply,” implying that negotiators have been involved in the talks.

A report published in the Al Hayat newspaper quoted a senior Palestinian Islamic Jihad leader as saying that Israel was “eager to reach an agreement,” and that senior Israeli officials had been involved in indirect talks.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/pmo-no-negotiations-under-fire-period/2014/08/26/

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