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>Israel Faxx
>JN Nov. 15, 2001, Vol. 9, No. 190

Eleven Israelis in U.S. Denied Bail


Eleven Israelis who were working illegally in Ohio have been denied bail. They are among the many illegal foreigners that were incarcerated by law-enforcement officials following the Sept.11 World Trade Center attack.

Consular officials indicate as many as tens of Israelis are being held in jails in the U.S. on visa violations, with some having remained after their visas expired while others were working with a tourist visa that did not permit them to be employed in the U.S.

Israeli Minister: Arab Lawmakers are Palestinian Agents

By VOA News

Israel Public Security Minister Uzi Landau touched off an uproar in the Israeli parliament Wednesday when he accused several Arab legislators of being "agents" of the Palestinian Authority. An angry altercation resulted in the ejection of five deputies - four Arabs and a Jew - from the session.

Landau's remark came in a discussion of a bill on prisoner rights proposed by Arab legislator Hashem Mahameed of the Ra'am party. He charged that some Arab legislators were collaborating with the Palestinian Authority against Israel. He went on to accuse some Arab members of parliament of traveling to Syria and the Palestinian Authority to meet with terrorists.

Arab deputies shouted at Landau to retract his claim, and four of them were dismissed from the session. They continued shouting from outside the chamber. A Jewish member of parliament who almost got in a fistfight with one of the Arab deputies was also thrown out of the session. Of 120 members of Israeli parliament, 11 are Arabs.

Palestinian Official in Jerusalem Advocates End of Violence

By Meredith Buel (VOA-Jerusalem)

The Palestinians' new top official in Jerusalem is advocating an end to violence and significant concessions to Israel if peace negotiations resume. Sari Nusseibeh was recently appointed by Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat as the political commissioner for Jerusalem affairs. The Palestinian official's positions on the peace process are already stirring controversy.

Nusseibeh is known for consistently holding pragmatic and moderate views on the peace process with Israel, and his new position has given him a powerful platform to express his message of compromise.

Nusseibeh says more than 13 months of Israeli-Palestinian bloodshed prove that violence does not work for either side. "Violence leads nowhere," he said. "When I say violence leads nowhere I mean that neither the Israelis, by their use of violence against the Palestinians, will they be able to impose their will on the Palestinians. Nor conversely will the Palestinians, by their use of violence or force against Israelis, will they be able to impose their will on Israelis.

"Violence does not help. Violence breeds more violence, force only force. Given the fact that the use of force only will generate more force it is only rational to look for another path. The path to look for is negotiation and discussion and talking and dialog."

Nusseibeh is more than a Palestinian politician. He was educated at Harvard and Oxford and is president of Al-Quds University, the largest Palestinian institute for higher learning in Jerusalem.

The gray-haired descendant of a prominent Palestinian family, Nusseibeh traces his roots in Jerusalem back more than 800 years. For five centuries, Nusseibeh's family has held the keys for the doors of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, which many Christians believe marks the site of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus.

While Nusseibeh's political views are generally viewed as practical, his position on the right-of-return of Palestinian refugees to their former homes inside Israel is at odds with the policy stated for decades by Arafat.

Nusseibeh says the Palestinian Authority's insistence on the return of millions of refugees within Israel's current borders is what he calls a "deal breaker" that will cause negotiations to fail. "Israel clearly will not accept - in a negotiation over a two-state solution, will not accept - the return of over four million refugees within its borders," said Nusseibeh.

While Nusseibeh says Palestinian refugees must give up the right to return to land inside Israel, he says Israelis must also understand they must evacuate Jewish settlements in the Palestinian territories.

He says 400,000 settlers must leave the West Bank, Gaza, and East Jerusalem before a peace agreement can be reached. "I think one of the greatest harms done to the peace process, as we know over the past seven years, has been the continued, escalating process of settlement, annexation, confiscation of land undertaken by Israel," he said. "This is true in the West Bank, but it is even more true within East Jerusalem."

Israel reannexed East Jerusalem (which was annexed by Jordan in 1948) shortly after capturing it in the 1967 Middle East war and claims the entire city as its capital. Most countries do not recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and have their embassies in Tel Aviv.

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