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Media Summary

Hague backs Israel as secure Jewish homeland

In the UK and international press today, most papers report on developments in Syria as President Bashar Assad yesterday addressed the nation in a defiant manner and dismissed the antigovernment protests calling it a conspiracy of foreign powers. The Guardian leads with an editorial saying that Assad’s speech offered no new measures or any promises to the Syrian people. In other news, the Guardian notes that Israel presented a plan to build an artificial island off the coast of Gaza to cater for a sea and airport allowing for imports and exports to and from Gaza. BBC Online notes that Argentina has pledged to Israel that it will continue its investigation into the bombings of the Israel embassy and Jewish community centre in the early 1990s.

In the Israeli press, Haaretz and the Jerusalem Post carry extracts from British Foreign Secretary William Hague’s address yesterday marking 60 years of British-Israeli diplomatic relations. Hague said that Britain supports Israel as a secure Jewish homeland with a right to defend itself. All papers report that Israeli military officials released a map to the Washington Post identifying nearly 1,000 Hezbollah military locations, underground bunkers and weapon storage facilities across southern Lebanon. Haaretz notes that PA President Mahmoud Abbas said that he will leave his post by September if no progress is made in peace talks with Israel. Haaretz and the Jerusalem Post reports that Argentina’s foreign minister offered assurance to Israel that its government is committed to investigating the terrorist bombing of the Israeli embassy and Jewish centre in the 1990s.