Newspaper Review: Presidency Remarks Stressing Impossibility of Peace without Jerusalem Focus of Dailies

RAMALLAH, May 19, 2015 (WAFA) – Palestinian Presidential Spokesperson Nabil Abu Rudeineh’s remarks stressing the centrality of having East Jerusalem as capital of the Palestinian state in order to achieve regional peace together with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s remarks about maintaining Israeli sovereignty over the city, featured the main news item in Palestinian dailies.

Al-Ayyam reported that Netanyahu called for intensifying settlement construction in Jerusalem and quoted him as stating: “The only choice for this city is to keep it ]united[ under Israeli sovereignty.”

It is worth noting that Netanyahu made his remarks during the ‘Jerusalem Day’ in East Jerusalem.

Responding to Netanyahu’s remarks, Abu Rudenieh was quoted in al-Quds and al-Ayyam as stating: “Neither peace nor stability will be achieved in the region without having ]East[ Jerusalem as the capital of future Palestinian state.”

Highlighting Israeli settlers’ practices as its main front page news item, al-Quds reported that settlers forced their way into al-Aqsa Mosque Compound and set fire to 250 fully-grown olive trees in the Bethlehem village of al-Jab‘a.

Al-Quds and al-Ayyam added in this regard that demolition notices were handed by Israeli forces to Palestinian homes in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan.

On the other hand, al-Hayat al-Jadida highlighted in its main front page news EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini’s upcoming meeting with Abbas.

It reported that Mogherini is scheduled to meet President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday and quoted her as stating: “We seek to re-launch the peace process on the basis of the two-state solution.”

Mogherini was also quoted in al-Ayyam as stating: “Europe seeks to play a major role in the Middle East peace process.”

Also with regard to any future talks with Israel, Premier Rami Hamdallah was reported in al-Quds newspaper as demanding setting new parameters that would set a deadline for any upcoming negotiations.

The three dailies reported that Netanyahu has designated minister Silvan Shalom, [who opposed Palestinian state] in charge of conducting negotiations with the Palestinian authority.

Al-Quds and al-Hayat al-Jadida quoted Israeli human rights organization of Yesh Din as saying: “The overwhelming majority of settlers perpetrating assaults in the Palestinian territories go unpunished.”

Al-Ayyam and al-Hayat al-Jadida reported that a Palestinian businessmen who holds a Canadian citizenship was detained by Israel purportedly for his relation with Hamas. Al-Hayat al-Jadida noted that his detention was intended to obstruct investment by expatriate Palestinian businessmen in Palestine.