The EU decision to impose a ban on the import of Iranian crude oil is the main item of Middle East related coverage in the UK media today. The Daily Telegraph, Scotsman, Reuters and BBC Online have this story. In other items, the Guardian runs a comment piece on what the writer describes as a ‘smear’ against an Arab-Israeli human rights group. The Daily Telegraph, Reuters and Independent note widespread dis-satisfaction with the performance of Arab observers in Syria. The Independent also has a piece on the meeting between Israeli and Palestinian representatives this week. The Financial Times notes a UK warning to Iran not to close the Straits of Hormuz. Reuters notes Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s freezing of a bill on the appointment of judges in Israel, and has an additional piece on the final leg of elections to the lower house of the Egyptian parliament. The Independent runs a piece on the possibility of war with Iran. Metro-London, meanwhile, has an article on the hatred felt by Israeli extreme rightists toward former-prime minister Ariel Sharon.
In the Israeli media, all papers note PM Netanyahu’s freezing of a bill on the appointment of judges in Israel. Haaretz, Ynetnews and the Jerusalem Post note the EU decision to ban imports of Iranian crude oil. The Jerusalem Post notes that a panel led by Judge Meir Shamgar is set to recommend an end to mass prisoner swaps by Israel. Israel Hayom has a piece on the revelation of credit card details of Israelis by Saudi hackers. Ynetnews runs a piece on the parliamentary elections in Egypt.