Newsletter : 0fax0726.txt
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>JN July 26, 2000, Vol. 8, No. 129
Egged May Ban Radios on Hareidi Lines
The Egged bus cooperative may prohibit drivers from listening to
the radio on hareidi (ultra-Orthodox) lines since the radio is
deemed offensive by the hareidi population. Egged bus cooperative
officials indicated the move may follow requests from leaders of
the hareidi community. Company spokesman Ron Ratner explained
hareidi men and women are heavy users of the bus system, and on
certain lines, constitute 100 percent of the commuters.
Barak and Arafat Return to Middle East
By VOA's Deborah Tate (White House), Nick Simeone (Thurmont,
Md.) & Art Chimes (Jerusalem)
President Clinton - announcing the breakdown of the Camp David
Middle East peace summit Tuesday - confirmed reports that Jerusalem
proved to be the biggest stumbling block to an agreement.
Israelis and Palestinians blamed each other for the failure to
reach a deal during the 14 days of talks, accusing one another of
not negotiating in good faith - particularly on the issue of
Trying to put the best interpretation on the breakdown, Clinton
noted it was the first time the parties ever had seriously
discussed Jerusalem. He emphasized the religious, political and
emotional dimensions of the issue in arguing that it was not a
surprise the talks ended as they did.
"There is no other place in the world like Jerusalem, which is
basically at the core of the identity of all three monotheistic
religions in the world, at the core of what it means to be a
Palestinian, at the core of the identity of what it means to be an
Israel insists that Jerusalem be its undivided capital, while the
Palestinians want East Jerusalem as the capital of a future
independent Palestinian state. Israel captured East Jerusalem in
the 1967 Middle East war and annexed it.
Despite a news blackout imposed on the Camp David proceedings by
the United States, reports from the region said Prime Minister Ehud
Barak had offered the Palestinians sovereignty over some
predominantly Arab neighborhoods in East Jerusalem.
But Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat rejected them, demanding full
sovereignty over East Jerusalem. Palestinian sources say Arafat was
especially angered over Israel's refusal to grant Palestinian
sovereignty over Jerusalem's walled Old City - offering only access
to the Al Aksa mosque, the third-holiest site in Islam. Before dawn
Tuesday, the Palestinian leader sent Clinton a letter saying
the Israeli proposals on Jerusalem would not lead to an agreement.
Clinton did not comment on the letter. But while praising Arafat's
commitment to peace, he said Barak had made greater strides toward
compromise. "Prime Minister Barak showed particular courage, vision
and an understanding of the historical importance of this moment."
The president said despite the collapse of the talks, there had
been progress made on Jerusalem and other issues, and he expressed
hope that an agreement would be reached by the parties'
self-imposed deadline of Sept. 13.
"We have done our best, but unfortunately, we have ended with no
results," Barak told reporters. The prime minister placed the blame
for the collapse of the talks squarely on the Palestinians for not
willing to make a deal on Jerusalem.
"Unfortunately, Arafat somehow hesitated to take the historic
decisions that were needed in order to put an end to it and of
course I believe we should not lose hope. We should prepare for
"The vision of peace has suffered a major blow. We'll have to take
care for extremism and terrorism and to make sure the next few
weeks will not deteriorate the whole region into a new round of
Israel's military chief of staff says the army is ready to deal
with any possible Palestinian unrest. Gen. Shaul Mofaz told the
Knesset's security committee the military is aware of the threat
of possible violence in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Speaking in Hebrew, he said, "The army is ready for all possible
scenarios. We don't want violence, but it depends on the
Palestinians. In the past, he says, the confrontations have been
started by the Palestinians."
Palestinians have been predicting violence if the Camp David talks
fail, but there have been few direct threats. Even the militant
Islamic Hamas organization, which spearheaded the violent
Intifada uprising a decade ago, has not actually threatened
Most Jerusalem Arabs Choose Israel
By Arutz-7 News Service
Tuesday's Washington Post featured an article entitled, "Some Arabs
Reluctant To Be Free Of Israel."
"In an afternoon of more than 15 interviews with Palestinians in
Beit Hanina ... a clear majority said they would prefer to remain
under Israeli control rather than risk the economic and political
uncertainties of Arafat's Palestinian state-in-the-making."
"'The hell of Israel is better than the paradise of Arafat,' said
Abdulsamia Abu Sbeih, 57, a twinkly-eyed retired fishmonger in the
East Jerusalem neighborhood of Beit Hanina. "We know Israeli rule
stinks, but sometimes we feel like Palestinian rule would be
worse... The Palestinian Authority is full of thieves."
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