Mission & Name
US Foreign Policy (Dr. El-Najjar's Articles)
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following news reports are summaries from original sources. They may
also include corrections of Arabic names and political terminology.
Comments are in parentheses.
Europe More Open than US on Palestinian
Published yesterday (updated) 29/04/2011 02:39, Maan -
EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton issued a statement Thursday
saying she will follow with "great interest" the latest unity agreement
between Fat'h and Hamas.
The statement came as Israeli and US
officials said the deal could be the end of cooperation with the
Palestinian Authority, while a UN official welcomed the move, calling it
a necessary step toward negotiations.
"The EU has consistently
called for peace and reconciliation, under the authority of President
Abbas, leading to an end to the division between the West Bank and Gaza
and in support of greater security and stability across the region,"
Ashton said in the statement, adding that EU officials will "study the
detail of this agreement and discuss with colleagues in the EU and in
Israel's official reaction, in comparison, was
negative, with the country's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu saying
the PA should choose between peace with Israel, and Hamas.
Meanwhile Israeli President Shimon Peres said the move "as it stands, is
a fatal mistake," citing fears, according to the Israeli daily newspaper
Haaretz, that a future Palestinian election could lead to a "terror
organization ruling both Gaza and Judea and Samaria [the West Bank and
Jerusalem] and the triumph of Hamas' policies."
(If terrorism means killing civilians for
political reasons, then the Israeli occupation government is a terrorist
government for killing thousands of Palestinian and other Arab civilians
in the past 63 years).
The official US
government statement reiterated its stance that Hamas is a "terrorist
organization." It also said that any Palestinian government would have
to renounce violence, apparently opening the door for a new government
body under specific conditions.
Several US congressmen, however,
decried the unity move and immediately threatened to axe millions in
funding for the Palestinian Authority.
US House Foreign Affairs
Chairwoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen released a statement that a "hybrid"
government with Hamas would not qualify for US assistance because the
party did not recognize the existence of Israel. Hamas leaders have said
that recognition for the state would come when an agreement for a
Palestinian state on the 1967 borders was reached.
Senator from Illinois Mark Kirk echoed the sentiment on his Twitter
page, writing "Hamas +Fat'h = probable suspension of US aid to Palestinian
Authority...Hamas supports terror, killed 26 American citizens," while
New York Democrat Nita Lowey said the moves put funding "at risk."
President Mahmoud Abbas went on record Thursday morning saying he
believed the unity deal would help spur peace talks, and PLO officials
have called on the international community to support the process.
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