Ex-generals launch ‘Israeli Peace Initiative’
The main item of Israel related coverage in the UK media today is the accusation by Sudan that Israel carried out an airstrike near Port Sudan on Tuesday. The Guardian, Independent, Times, Reuters, BBC Online and Sky News Online note this latest development. In other items, the Guardian published a letter about the legacy of Juliano Mer-Khamis, the Israeli actor murdered in Jenin this week. The paper also runs a piece holding ‘British colonial policy’ responsible for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The Times reports on mourning in Israel for Juliano Mer-Khamis. The Daily Telegraph notes that Baroness Ashton, the EU foreign policy chief, has warned that Israel’s plan to build more than 900 homes in Gilo in south Jerusalem are an “obstacle to peace.” Reuters has an article on Syria which notes that for as long as the army and security forces remain behind President Bashar Assad, his position is probably secure. The Financial Times and BBC Online report on the launch of a new peace plan by a group of prominent Israeli citizens. Sky News Online notes that a man has been arrested by the Palestinian Authority, under suspicion of responsibility for the murder of Juliano Mer Khamis. Metro London has a report claiming that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hopes to persuade Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, to supply a sixth diesel-powered Dolphin submarine to Israel at a reduced price. The Guardian notes that Syria has removed a ban on female teachers wearing the full face veil (niqab). The Times has an article on the Stuxnet computer virus.
In the Israeli media, all papers focus on the airstrike in Sudan. The Jerusalem Post notes plans initiated by a Likud MK to file a civil suit against Judge Richard Goldstone in the US. Ynetnews and the Jerusalem Post note a new poll revealing that 32% of Palestinians support the Itamar terrorist attack. Israeli media are reporting on further allegations made by Channel 10’s ‘Makor’ programme about hospitality and foreign travel accepted by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Haaretz notes that the Wikileaks cables reveal a statement by a settler leader that some West Bank settlers would be willing to leave ‘for the right price.’ The Jerusalem Post reports that President Shimon Peres is set to ask the UN to shelve the Goldstone Report. Ynetnews, meanwhile, quotes US ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice who doubts that the Goldstone Report can be amended and said that the US wants to see the report ‘disappear.’ Maariv has a piece quoting Palestinian sources who say that the Hamas man killed in Port Sudan, reportedly by Israel, was Abd-al Latif Ashkar, who they describe as the successor to the slain Mahmoud al-Mabhuh, and the chief of Hamas’s smuggling operation from Iran to Gaza. In other news the Jerusalem Post reports that the Military Advocate General yesterday announced that the Military Police would open criminal investigations into the deaths of allegedly innocent Palestinians.