Sunday, 31 August 2014

Hamas: Attempt to disarm resistance futile


The Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) said on Saturday that any international attempt to disarm Palestinian resistance would be worthless.

Hamas's spokesperson Sami Abu-Zuhri said in statements to Anadolu that any project that aims at disarming resistance would be a violation of international law.

"What is needed is the disarmament of Israeli army and preventing the US administration from providing it with weapons used in killing women and children," he said.

Diplomats at the United Nations have revealed that efforts are currently being made to reach a decision at the Security Council which would constitute a long-term solution that would prevent the recurrence of a battle between Palestinians in Gaza and Israel.

Israel demands the disarming of Hamas's military wing as a precondition for any lasting truce.

The Palestinian and Israeli sides signed an Egyptian-sponsored long-term ceasefire agreement on Tuesday. Palestinian resistance factions consider the agreement a "victory" and stressed that they have achieved most of their goals during the battle with Israel.

The agreement, according to the Egyptian foreign ministry, calls for a comprehensive and mutual ceasefire as well as the immediate opening of border crossings between Gaza and Israel to allow for the entrance of humanitarian aid and reconstruction materials.

The agreement also stipulates the extension of Gaza's Mediterranean fishing zone and the continuation of the negotiations over all other issues, such as prisoners, the airport and the seaport, to take place within a month of the ceasefire. more

Palestinian officials slam Israeli land confiscation in West Bank


JERUSALEM (AFP) -- Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat called for diplomatic action against Israel in response to its move to annex 4,000 dunams (1,000 acres) of Palestinian land south of Bethlehem in the West Bank on Sunday.

"The Israeli government is committing various crimes against the Palestinian people and their occupied land," Erekat told AFP.

"The international community should hold Israel accountable as soon as possible for its crimes and raids against our people in Gaza and the ongoing Israeli settlement activity in the West Bank and East Jerusalem."

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's policy of constant settlement expansion on land the Palestinians claim for a future state is deemed illegal by the European Union and an "obstacle to peace" by the United States and opposed by both.

"Today's announcement clearly represents Israel's deliberate intent to wipe out any Palestinian presence on the land and to willfully impose a de facto one-state solution," senior PLO official Hanan Ashrawi said.

Some 550,000 Israelis live among 2.4 million Palestinians in the West Bank and occupied East Jerusalem, territory that Israel captured in the 1967 Six-Day War and later annexed in a move never recognized by the international community. more

New book reveals top-secret collusion between Israel, US during 20 years of 'peace talks'


“I’ll back you and protect you, I’m your guy … it’s very upsetting … all the Arabs are the same,” US President Bill Clinton told Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak in a 19 July 2000 meeting during the failed Camp David summit with Palestinian Authority president Yasser Arafat.

Only months earlier, in March 2000, Clinton displayed the same kind of obeisance to Barak — albeit without the racist slur this time — when he explained, “I’ll do my best … I’ve gone through the script … I’ll do a good job.” He said this while he attempted to reassure Barak during another failed summit, this time with then-president of Syria Hafez al-Assad.

That the US government has acted as Israel’s attorney rather than an honest mediator in peace negotiations has been known for some time, ever since the disclosure of a secret 1975 letter from President Gerald Ford to Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin.

But these quotes from Ahron Bregman’s Cursed Victory: A History of Israel and the Occupied Territories (2014), which includes the actual “script” agreed upon between Clinton and Barak, make graphically clear the extent of the collusion between the two governments.

Top secret disclosures

Bregman’s book breaks new ground with a number of leaked top secret disclosures from Israeli sources. It shows that the recent revelation that Israel eavesdropped on current US Secretary of State John Kerry is really nothing new.

Israel also secretly recorded conversations between Clinton and Assad back in 2000. The only question unanswered is why, given the extent of the collusion, the Israeli government believed it was necessary to eavesdrop on its counterpart. more