Media Summary

Quartet in final effort to avert Palestinian statehood bid

The main item of Israel-related coverage in the UK media today is the upcoming Palestinian bid for UN recognition of a unilateral declaration of statehood. The Guardian, Times, Daily Mail, Daily Mirror, Financial Times, Independent, Reuters, BBC Online and Glasgow Herald all have coverage and analysis of this developing story. The Independent notes a statement by PM Netanyahu that the bid is likely to fail. The Guardian publishes a letter arguing that the suspension of a number of British classical musicians for supporting a boycott of Israel sets a dangerous precedent. BBC Online, meanwhile, publishes a poll indicating widespread support for the Palestinian bid among world publics. The Times notes the arrival of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad to New York for his address to the UN General Assembly. The Independent notes that Turkey has said it will freeze relations with the European Union if Cyprus is given the presidency in 2012, signalling a new low point for Turkey’s relations with the EU. The Independent runs a letter, which criticizes an article in the paper claiming that Israel was built on ‘stolen Palestinian land’ to ‘assuage the guilt of the Holocaust.’

Over the weekend, the upcoming Palestinian bid for UN approval of a unilateral bid for statehood dominated Israel-related coverage in the UK media. The Observer, Guardian, Sunday Telegraph, Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail, Sunday Times, Independent on Sunday and Financial Times had reports on the impending development. The Sunday Times had details of what it claimed is a peace plan that will be put forward by PM Netanyahu. The Independent on Sunday ran a piece on Turkey’s bid to lead the Arab world and the implications for Israel. The paper had an additional piece claiming that US President Barack Obama is running into trouble with the ‘Jewish Lobby’ in the US. The Independent noted Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan’s continued criticism of the Syrian regime. The Guardian on Saturday noted that the London Philharmonic Orchestra has suspended four musicians for nine months for using its name when they called unsuccessfully for the cancellation of a concert by an Israeli orchestra at the Proms. The paper also noted renewed demonstrations in Egypt protesting the reactivation of emergency laws.

The print edition of the Jerusalem Post today notes a statement by PM Netanyahu that Israel’s cooperation with the US is currently at its best since the beginning of the Obama Administration.  Haaretz notes that Netanyahu is facing international pressure not to ‘punish’ the Palestinians because of the statehood bid. Israel Hayom notes a statement by Netanyahu that the Palestinian bid for recognition at the UN will fail.

In the Israeli media today, all papers focus on the Palestinian bid for statehood at the UN, and international efforts to induce the Palestinians to abandon the bid and return to negotiations. Haaretz and Israel Hayom have pieces on the Labour Party leadership race in Israel. The Jerusalem Post, Ynetnews and Israel Hayom have pieces on preparations by Israeli security forces in the run-up to the bid. Ynetnews notes a claim by Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu that Ankara blocked an Israeli bid to open an office in Brussels as part of NATO’s Mediterranean Dialogue initiative. Maariv notes that a dinner for Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad with students at Columbia University has been cancelled, because of threats of legal action by the families of Israelis killed or wounded in terror attacks.