Media Summary

Last minute attempts to reach a compromise over Palestinian statehood bid

The Palestinian plan to ask for UN approval of a unilateral declaration of statehood dominates Israel-related coverage in the UK media today. The Times, Financial Times, Scotsman, Economist, BBC Online and Reuters have details of the Palestinian bid, and last minute international attempts to avert it through compromise. In other items, the Guardian and Times note reports that Turkey has returned a high-ranking Syrian defector to Syria. The Guardian, Independent and Jewish Chronicle note an anti-Israel demonstration outside the Israeli embassy in Amman, Jordan. The Daily Telegraph notes an amendment to universal jurisdiction law in the UK. The Independent has a piece on an IDF reservist who details claimed actions by the Israeli military when facing demonstrations in the village of Nebi Saleh on the West Bank. The Scotsman notes the establishment in Turkey of a newly named 72-person Syrian opposition council. Jewish News notes that Britain will not take part in an event to mark the anniversary of a UN anti-racism conference, which saw harsh criticism of Israel. The New Statesman has a piece on the suspension of a number of British classical musicians who signed a letter calling for the BBC to cancel a concert by the Israel Philharmonic. Reuters notes a US tax evasion investigation, which will include Swiss branches of a number of Israeli banks. Reuters also notes continued repression of demonstrations in Syria and quotes Egyptian Prime Minister Essam Sharaf that the peace agreement between Israel and Egypt was not ‘sacred.’ BBC Online notes an incident of anti-Semitic abuse which one of their reporters faced in Egypt. BBC Online also reports the apprehending of a suspected terror cell consisting of Arab citizens of Israel. The Evening Standard reports on the arrest by Hezbollah of a British cyclist in Lebanon who they suspected of being an ‘Israeli spy.’ The Evening Standard and Financial Times report on the founding of a new Syrian opposition council. The Financial Times has a piece on Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyep Erdogan’s popularity in the Arab world. The paper also notes EU Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton’s involvement in the diplomacy of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and reports on Netanyahu’s planned speech to the UN next week. The Independent and Financial Times note that Belarus is suspected of helping Iran avoid sanctions. The Times notes the implications of recent protests in London against a performance by the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra.

The print editions of Haaretz, the Jerusalem Post and Israel Hayom focus on next week’s plan by the PA to seek UN approval of Palestinian statehood, and PM Netanyahu’s plan to address the UN General Assembly.  

In the Israeli media, all papers focus on the planned Palestinian bid for UN approval next week of a Palestinian declaration of statehood. Haaretz and Ynetnews note the amendment this week of universal jurisdiction law in the UK. The Jerusalem Post reports that Quartet Middle East Envoy Tony Blair is supporting a proposal designed to postpone the Palestinian statehood bid. Israel Hayom notes that Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has instructed Foreign Ministry representatives to file an official complaint with EU countries and the United States over remarks made by a Palestinian official in the U.S. regarding a future Palestinian state having no Jewish population. Maariv quotes un-named Israeli officials who are critical of PA President Mahmoud Abbas, because of the Palestinian bid for a recognition by the UN of Palestinian statehood, which they refer to as a ‘hollow declaration.” Ynetnews notes the small turnout at an anti-Israel march in Jordan.