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NEWS
June 27, 2013 | By Josef Federman, Associated Press
JERUSALEM - Israel on Wednesday announced plans to build dozens of homes in a contentious east Jerusalem settlement, casting a cloud over an upcoming peace mission by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. Kerry has been shuttling between Israel and the Palestinians in recent months in search of a formula to restart peace talks. Kerry has urged both sides to avoid provocative moves that could undermine his work. Talks have been stalled for nearly five years. The Palestinians have demanded a halt in settlement construction before returning to the negotiating table.
NEWS
April 5, 2011 | By Amy Teibel, Associated Press
JERUSALEM - Jerusalem officials gave preliminary approval Monday for the building of 942 new apartments in a Jewish development in the city's contested eastern sector. Although it would be years before construction starts, the project in the neighborhood of Gilo is likely to infuriate the Palestinians at an especially delicate diplomatic moment. Israeli President Shimon Peres is scheduled to meet Tuesday with President Obama to explore ways to jump-start stalled Israeli-Palestinian peacemaking.
NEWS
December 11, 1997 | FROM INQUIRER WIRE SERVICES
The Israeli parliament enacted yesterday a broad ban on Palestinian political activity in East Jerusalem, aiming to block a Palestinian-backed census that would challenge further Israel's claim to the area. Parliament approved the legislation by a vote of 26-11 in a marathon session that stretched into the night. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu scrambled to push the bill through parliament in accelerated proceedings after legal experts said an existing law banning political activity by the Palestinian Authority in Jerusalem did not cover census-taking.
NEWS
September 28, 2011 | By Josef Federman, Associated Press
JERUSALEM - Israel granted the go-ahead Tuesday for construction of 1,100 Jewish housing units in southeast Jerusalem, and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ruled out any freeze in settlement construction, raising already-heightened tensions after last week's Palestinian move to seek U.N. membership. Israel's Interior Ministry said the homes would be built in Gilo, a sprawling Jewish enclave. It said construction could begin after a mandatory 60-day period for public comment, a process that spokesman Roi Lachmanovich called a formality.
NEWS
November 5, 2009 | By JOHN R. COHN
THIS MONTH, Berlin will mark the 20th anniversary of the fall of the city's infamous wall. Made of stark concrete and barbed wire, and dotted with watchtowers, it divided the heart of Berlin into eastern and western sectors. Hundreds died there trying to cross into freedom. Berlin became a city early in the 14th century, when two feudal villages merged. Unified for hundreds of years, its division into eastern Soviet and western Allied zones grew out of the devastation of World War II. Berlin was divided for just over 44 years, until the collapse of East Germany (another arbitrary relic of the cold war)
NEWS
December 11, 2012 | By Josef Federman, Associated Press
JERUSALEM - Israel's prime minister on Monday accused the international community of "deafening silence" in response to recent vows by the head of the Hamas militant group to fight on until the Jewish state is destroyed, and appeared unmoved by the gathering storm of global condemnation of his government's plans to continue settling the West Bank. Benjamin Netanyahu's tough words were likely to deepen the rift between Israel and some of its closest allies, particularly in Europe, that has emerged since the U.N. General Assembly overwhelmingly voted in favor of Palestinian independence last month.
NEWS
December 4, 2012 | By Dalia Nammari and Aron Heller, Associated Press
RAMALLAH, West Bank - Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas returned triumphantly to the West Bank on Sunday, receiving a boisterous welcome from thousands of cheering supporters at a rally celebrating his people's acceptance to the United Nations. An Israeli decision to cut off a cash transfer to the financially troubled Palestinian Authority, following an earlier decision to build thousands of new homes in Jewish settlements, failed to put a damper on the celebrations. But Palestinian officials acknowledged they were undecided on what to do with their newfound status, and were waiting for Israeli elections and new ideas from President Obama before deciding how to proceed.
NEWS
September 5, 1995 | By Alan Sipress, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Despite an international boycott, Israel yesterday began its mammoth celebration of 3,000 years of Jewish history in Jerusalem with a fireworks and laser extravaganza. "Jerusalem has always been the heart of the Jewish people," Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin said in inaugurating the 17-month-long "Jerusalem 3000" cultural festival at a reconstructed archeological site beside the walled Old City. The thundering booms of the fireworks show, however, were in sharp contrast to the silence with which the commemoration has been met abroad.
NEWS
June 19, 1998 | By Barbara Demick, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER This article includes information from Inquirer wire services
Israel unveiled a plan yesterday to expand the boundaries of Jerusalem and to stem the exodus of the Jewish population, which is growing at a slower pace than the Arab populace. The master plan for the city calls for the building of a beltway and a light-rail system and the construction of 140,000 new units of housing by the year 2020, along with various incentives to create jobs in the scientific and technological sectors. It also would expand the city limits into Jerusalem's western suburbs - in Israel proper - and strengthen transportation and administrative links with Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank.
NEWS
September 29, 2011 | By Aron Heller, Associated Press
JERUSALEM - Israelis welcomed the Jewish New Year on Wednesday with optimism, despite a showdown last week between their prime minister and the Palestinian Authority president at the United Nations that made a Mideast peace deal ever more unlikely. The reason for the optimism may be that Israelis tend to distinguish between their personal lives and their country's politics, said pollster Mina Tzemach, who found that 88 percent of Jews in Israel were in good spirits for the Rosh Hashanah holiday and believe the country is a good place to live.
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NEWS
August 2, 2013 | By Trudy Rubin, Inquirer Columnist
Why now? You have to ask, with the entire Arab world falling apart, and President Obama caught up in urgent domestic matters, why has Secretary of State John Kerry staked his reputation on another effort to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict? And, given the number of failed peace efforts over the past four decades, why on earth would Kerry set a goal of reaching an overall peace deal in nine months - which is, to put it mildly, impossible? Especially in the wake of the Arab Spring.
NEWS
June 27, 2013 | By Josef Federman, Associated Press
JERUSALEM - Israel on Wednesday announced plans to build dozens of homes in a contentious east Jerusalem settlement, casting a cloud over an upcoming peace mission by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. Kerry has been shuttling between Israel and the Palestinians in recent months in search of a formula to restart peace talks. Kerry has urged both sides to avoid provocative moves that could undermine his work. Talks have been stalled for nearly five years. The Palestinians have demanded a halt in settlement construction before returning to the negotiating table.
NEWS
May 24, 2013 | By Mohammed Daraghmeh, Associated Press
RAMALLAH, West Bank - Palestinians believe the U.S. effort to restart peace talks is doomed, and they're preparing instead to resume their campaign of seeking membership in key international organizations as soon as next month, officials said Wednesday. As Secretary of State John Kerry arrives on another peace mission, Israel and the Palestinians appear to be as divided as ever over the issue of Israeli settlement-building. Without major U.S. pressure on Israel, Palestinians believe the outlook seems bleak.
NEWS
April 8, 2013 | By Trudy Rubin, Inquirer Columnist
When Secretary of State John Kerry revisits Israel and the West Bank this week, he's unlikely to talk about what really needs discussing: What will Israel and the Palestinians do once the two-state solution dies? No one wants to discuss such a grim prospect, let alone admit that the peace process is over. Such an admission would have earthshaking repercussions not only for the Palestinians and Israelis, but for Washington and the entire Mideast. So the pretense continues that peace talks can be revived.
NEWS
March 23, 2013 | By Scott Wilson, Washington Post
JERUSALEM - President Obama urged Israelis on Thursday to move decisively in a spirit of self-preservation and empathy to secure a lasting peace, but he delivered an even sharper ultimatum to Palestinians to drop conditions that have held up a new round of negotiations. His evening address at the Jerusalem International Convention Center signaled a shift away from the balance he has sought to maintain between Israeli and Palestinian leaders since taking office - and toward Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, with whom he has had a stormy relationship, at least until this trip.
NEWS
December 19, 2012 | By Matthew Lee, Associated Press
WASHINGTON - In unusually rare and blunt criticism of its top Mideast ally, the Obama administration on Tuesday criticized Israel for continuing to announce new settlement construction on land claimed by the Palestinians. The State Department accused Israel of engaging in a "pattern of provocative action" that calls into question statements from Israeli leaders that they are committed to peace. Spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said settlement activity only puts the goal of peace "further at risk" and urged both Israel and the Palestinians to halt all provocations and take steps to revive long-stalled peace talks.
NEWS
December 11, 2012 | By Josef Federman, Associated Press
JERUSALEM - Israel's prime minister on Monday accused the international community of "deafening silence" in response to recent vows by the head of the Hamas militant group to fight on until the Jewish state is destroyed, and appeared unmoved by the gathering storm of global condemnation of his government's plans to continue settling the West Bank. Benjamin Netanyahu's tough words were likely to deepen the rift between Israel and some of its closest allies, particularly in Europe, that has emerged since the U.N. General Assembly overwhelmingly voted in favor of Palestinian independence last month.
NEWS
December 4, 2012 | By Dalia Nammari and Aron Heller, Associated Press
RAMALLAH, West Bank - Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas returned triumphantly to the West Bank on Sunday, receiving a boisterous welcome from thousands of cheering supporters at a rally celebrating his people's acceptance to the United Nations. An Israeli decision to cut off a cash transfer to the financially troubled Palestinian Authority, following an earlier decision to build thousands of new homes in Jewish settlements, failed to put a damper on the celebrations. But Palestinian officials acknowledged they were undecided on what to do with their newfound status, and were waiting for Israeli elections and new ideas from President Obama before deciding how to proceed.
NEWS
July 13, 2012 | By Josef Federman, Associated Press
JERUSALEM - Could Ehud Olmert be plotting his return to politics? Although the former prime minister denies it, that was the buzz in Israel on Thursday, after he was acquitted of a series of corruption charges that forced him to resign three years ago. The momentum is driven by the displeasure of many with Olmert's successor, Benjamin Netanyahu, the sense that the current opposition leaders are too weak to unseat him, and a sinking suspicion...
NEWS
April 4, 2012 | By Dan Perry, Associated Press
JERUSALEM - Israel's prime minister said Tuesday that he still hopes to reach a peace deal with the Palestinians, because the alternative would be absorbing them into Israel and destroying the Jewish character of the state. "I want to solve the conflict with the Palestinians because I don't want a binational state," Netanyahu told a rare news conference. "For as long as it depends on me, we will ensure the Jewish and democratic character of Israel. " The statement was notable because it in effect concedes a key argument made by Netanyahu's ideological opponents on Israel's Zionist left: A pullout from territories the Palestinian claim for a state is not just a concession that could be made in exchange for peace - but also an imperative for an Israel that wants to remain a Jewish state that is also democratic.
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