Wednesday, July 24, 2019

From Ian:

Jason D. Greenblatt (U.S. Mission to the UN): U.S.: The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Will Not Be Decided by International Consensus or International Law
Assistant to the President and Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason D. Greenblatt told the UN Security Council on Tuesday:

"This [Israeli-Palestinian] conflict will not end on the basis of an 'international consensus.'...Those who continue to call for international consensus on this conflict are doing nothing to encourage the parties to sit down at the negotiating table and make the hard compromises necessary for peace. In fact, they are doing the opposite - allowing people to hide behind words that mean nothing."

"Let us not forget that day when the United Nations could not even find a way to build an international consensus behind the fact that Hamas is a terrorist organization that relentlessly attacks Israelis by incendiary balloons, missiles, attack tunnels and other means, sometimes while hiding in residential neighborhoods filled with Palestinian families. Hamas, which ghoulishly holds [the remains of] Israeli soldiers Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul as bargaining chips. Hamas, which...continues to vow to destroy Israel."

"And how is it that we can't find an international consensus that the Palestinian Authority rewarding terrorism and the murder of Israelis using public funds, some donated by countries in this very room, is abhorrent and must be stopped."

"This conflict is also not going to be resolved by reference to 'international law' when such law is inconclusive....There is no judge, jury, or court in the world that the parties involved have agreed to give jurisdiction in order to decide whose interpretations are correct."

"The same holds true for the status of Jerusalem....No international consensus or interpretation of international law will persuade the United States or Israel that a city in which Jews have lived and worshipped for nearly 3,000 years and has been the capital of the Jewish State for 70 years, is not - today and forever - the capital of Israel."

"Let us not lose sight of the fact that Israel has already conceded at least 88% of the territory captured by Israel in the defensive war it had no choice but to fight in 1967."

"The dispute over the territory is a question that can only be resolved in the context of direct negotiations between the parties. And I am focused on how to get those parties back to that table."
Greenblatt: Palestinian Aspirations for Jerusalem Don’t Constitute a Right
The Palestinian aspiration to a have a capital in Jerusalem is “not a right,” and “international consensus is not international law” when it comes to creating a Palestinian state, said US Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt on Tuesday.

“It is true that the PLO and the Palestinian Authority continue to assert that east Jerusalem must be a capital for the Palestinians,” Greenblatt told the UN Security Council, “but let’s remember—an aspiration is not a right.”

Addressing a regularly scheduled UNSC on “the situation in the Middle East,” Greenblatt said that “international consensus is not international law. So let’s stop kidding ourselves. If a so-called international consensus had been able to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, it would have done so decades ago. It didn’t.”

Greenblatt emphasized the limitations of international law in putting an end to the decades-long conflict, arguing that past UN resolutions have been “heavily negotiated, purposely ambiguously worded,” that Israelis and Palestinians have different interpretations of the law and that neither has recognized the jurisdiction of any international court.
US House overwhelmingly passes anti-BDS resolution
The US House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a resolution on Tuesday that rejects the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel, after some Democrats expressed concern last week that the measure could cause infighting within the party leading up to the 2020 election.

The bill — formally known as House Resolution 246 — also calls for increased security aid to Israel and a two-state solution. It passed by a vote of 398-17, with five abstentions.

Sixteen Democrats opposed the bill, including representatives Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, the first two Muslim women elected to Congress. Both support the BDS movement.

One Republican, Rep. Thomas Massie of Kentucky, voted against the resolution.

The measure “opposes the Global Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions Movement (BDS Movement) targeting Israel, including efforts to target United States companies that are engaged in commercial activities that are legal under United States law, and all efforts to delegitimize the State of Israel.”

It also says that the BDS campaign “undermines the possibility for a negotiated solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by demanding concessions of one party alone and encouraging the Palestinians to reject negotiations in favor of international pressure.”

Democratic Rep. Brad Schneider of Illinois originally sponsored the resolution, which had gained 349 co-sponsors by the time it was voted on.



The Nazi-like boycott of Jews is a global menace
Since its establishment in 2001 by the major Palestinian terrorist organizations, the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement has masqueraded as a nonviolent grassroots human rights organization that aims to “improve” the well-being of Palestinians. Instead of protecting the Palestinians, however, the movement is laser focused on economically, culturally and politically isolating and eradicating the State of Israel, using the model that was applied previously to the apartheid regime of South Africa.

Until recently, the BDS movement was able to hide its true intentions, building alliances with global civil rights groups. It sought protection for its hateful ideas using claims of freedom of speech, notwithstanding that it openly uses antisemitic propaganda that demonizes Jews living in Israel, the only homeland of the Jewish people. This acceptance allowed BDS to promote hate and incitement to violence against Jews in Israel and everywhere.

Abraham Lincoln once said, “You can fool all the people some of the time and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.” In recent years, it is become increasingly evident the BDS movement is – and always has been – a front of Palestinians terrorist organizations, such as Hamas, Islamic Jihad, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and Fatah, which are still coordinating major global BDS activities and have close links to many of its members and groups.

Many have come to understand that BDS is antisemitic. The US State Department defines antisemitism as animus toward Jews and cites the specific example of “denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g., by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavor.” This definition is accepted by governments and organizations around the globe. Self-determination is recognized as a human right and Israel, the one and only Jewish state, is an inseparable part of the Jewish identity.

Thus, BDS by definition is antisemitic. But that’s not all. More and more evidence shows that the BDS movement’s antisemitism not only works to deny the Jewish people the right of self-determination, but also drives violence against Jews and others globally.
House passes bill that calls to sanction Palestinian terror groups
The House of Representatives approved a bill on Tuesday that calls for sanctioning Hamas and other Palestinian terrorist groups.

House Resolution 1850, the Palestinian International Terrorism Support Prevention Act, is asking “to impose sanctions with respect to foreign support for Palestinian terrorism, and for other purposes.”

Sponsored by Rep. Brian Mast (R-Florida), the bill directs the president to submit an annual report to Congress, identifying “each foreign person or agency or instrumentality of a foreign state that... knowingly assists in, sponsors, or provides significant financial or material support” for “Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad or any affiliate.”

The legislation directs the president to impose at least two different financial sanctions on the people or agencies that are identified as assisting these terror groups.

The bill also requires the president to report to Congress on each government that provides support for acts of terrorism and provides material support to Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, or any affiliate organization.
House Condemns BDS Despite Protests From Reps. Omar, Tlaib
Omar, who has a history of anti-Semitic comments, voiced objection against the measure because the government should not “condemn nonviolent” boycotts.

Omar introduced legislation that affirms “all Americans have the right to participate in boycotts in pursuit of civil and human rights.” It does not specifically mention the BDS movement.

Tlaib provided a more blunt objection to the resolution:

Two weeks ago, Tlaib, the first Palestinian-American woman in Congress, took to Twitter to denounce the resolution saying it silences “the opposition to Israel’s blatantly racist policies that demonize both Palestinians and Ethiopians.”

“I stand before you the daughter of Palestenian immigrants,” Tlaib said on the House floor the morning of the vote. “Parents who experienced being stripped of their human rights, the right to freedom of travel, equal treatment. So I can’t stand by and watch this attack on our freedom of speech and the right to boycott the racist policies of the government and the state of Israel. I love our country’s freedom of speech, Madam Speaker. Dissent is how we nurture democracy.”
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Claims Anti-BDS Bill 'Forces' Anti-Israel Terrorism
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) suggested Tuesday that a non-binding resolution opposing boycotts of Israel would “force” critics of the Jewish state to commit acts of terror.

Ocasio-Cortez was one of only 17 members of Congress to vote against a bill expressing opposition to the anti-Israel “boycott, divestment, sanctions” (BDS) movement. (Some critics consider BDS to be antisemitic, because it singles out the Jewish state, ignoring Palestinian terrorism and the practices of authoritarian regimes in the region.)

CNN called the vote “divisive” — in deference to progressive Democrats who urged party leaders, in vain, not to put them on record on the issue — even though the tally was 398-17.

Three of the four left-wing “Squad” members voted against the non-binding resolution, including Ocasio-Cortez and Reps. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) and Ilhan Omar (D-MN), both of whom recently compared Israel to Nazi Germany. Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) voted in favor.

Ocasio-Cortez told Buzzfeed that “my concern with being overly punitive on nonviolent forms of protest is that it forces people into other channels and I would hate to be a part of, you know, paving that kind of path.”

She did not appear to consider that boycotts would still be legal; that other forms of non-violent protest would still be available; and that Palestinians could also simply negotiate with Israel for peace instead of supporting terrorism.


CNN Calls House's Unifying Anti-BDS Vote 'Divisive'
Yesterday, in an overwhelming vote of bipartisan support, the House of Representatives voted 398 to 17 to adopt a resolution opposing the anti-Israel BDS (boycott, divest, sanctions) campaign. Yet, CNN's headline casts the unifying vote as divisive, stating: "House approves resolution opposing Israel boycott movement in divisive vote."

As CNN's Ashley Killough and Clare Foran rightly reported in the accompanying text:
The House of representatives on Tuesday voted to approve a non-binding resolution that opposed the boycott movement against Israel, a measure that won broad bipartisan support but faced pushback from some high-profile progressives.

AP's headline underscored: "House opposes Israel boycott in bipartisan vote."

CAMERA has contacted CNN to request a correction. Stay tuned for an update.
David Singer: PLO Blocks West Bank Arabs Leaving for a Better Life
Secretary General of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Saeb Erekat has told a political symposium in Jericho that West Bank Arabs would not be allowed to voluntarily leave ̶ virtually holding them captives against their will.

Erekat stated:
“We will not allow resettlement or formation of refugee committees for that aim, while holding on to the settlement of their cause in accordance with international legitimacy resolutions.”

Michael Lynk ̶ the United Nations Human Rights Council’s “Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territory occupied since 1967” ̶ had issued a statement on June 28 endorsing the right to freedom of movement ̶ enshrined in Article 13 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Erekat’s outrageous threat was not responding to Lynk’s comments ̶ but to leaked reports claiming the United States might be seeking the resettlement of Palestinian refugees in at least five Arab neighbouring countries.

If confirmed, West Bank Arabs could well be prepared to voluntarily leave the West Bank in large numbers ̶ especially if offered the opportunity to legally enter other Arab countries and receive financial assistance for rehousing and resettlement there.

President Trump has a massive US$28.7 billion possibly available to aid West Bank Arabs who want to emigrate, being the money he wanted to plough into revitalising the West Bank and Gaza ̶ which both the PLO and Hamas unbelievably rejected.

Given the state of relationships between Israel, the PLO and Hamas ̶ spending that money earmarked for projects within the West Bank and Gaza was a highly questionable exercise that could have seen the destruction of such projects in future conflicts between these three long-time enemies.

An Israeli Liberal Says That Palestinians Killed Oslo and the Hope for Peace
One of the two original architects of the Oslo Accords, Yair Hirschfeld, performed a fascinating autopsy in Fathom to explain the failure of the agreements. He wrote his piece in response to the blame-Israel-first book, Preventing Palestine: A Political History From Camp David to Oslo by Seth Anziska

Hirshfeld, for those who don’t know, is a secular left-wing academic sympathetic to the Palestinian cause, and a believer in the two-state solution, which makes his analysis especially trenchant.

Like the Palestinians and so many of their apologists, Anziska believes peace can be achieved if Israel ends the “occupation.” The response of Palestinians to this idea is likely one you have never heard before. According to Hirschfeld, when he, Shimon Peres, and Yossi Beilin asked Palestinians whether Israel should withdraw from the West Bank and Gaza, they were told, “We Palestinians will first kill each other, and then we will start to kill you.” This is what many Jews believe, and a major reason for Israel’s reluctance to offer the Palestinians additional territorial concessions, which also explains their pessimism about the prospects for peace.

I have long argued that the Palestinians were foolish to reject Menachem Begin’s autonomy offer at Camp David, because it would have put them on an almost certain path to statehood and stymied the settlement movement. Hirschfeld says that Peres made this point to the Palestinians. “‘You would obtain a veto [he later changed the word to ‘vote’ on the transcript] on what we do in the West Bank and Gaza,’” he said, which would have prevented the number of settlers from growing from 6,000 to 450,000 today (Hirschfeld says 600,000, apparently counting East Jerusalem Jews as settlers).
Caroline Glick: Israeli Election Still a Wild Card
On the right, three issues will determine whether the 55 percent of Israelis who favor right-wing or center-right parties will see the formation of a center-right government under Netanyahu’s leadership.

The first issue is whether the bloc without Liberman will have the requisite 61 Knesset seats to form a government . Current polling still gives Liberman the kingmaker role. But it is hard to credit polls so early on in the race.

The second question is what will happen on the ideological right. A week remains before the parties finalize their lists and submit them to the Central Elections Commission. Currently, negotiations are ongoing between Shaked and Bennett’s New Right party and the Jewish Home party they abandoned. The parties hope to unify and bring in another right-wing splinter party. If these negotiations succeed, the prospect of April’s vote dump repeating itself will diminish significantly. Netanyahu’s prospects of forming a government without Liberman will rise in turn.

The final issue that will determine whether or not Netanyahu forms the next government is whether and how many other politicians on the right will join Liberman in working to overthrow Netanyahu, even at the price of allowing the formation of a leftist government.

Within Likud, senior politicians have told Breitbart News that they will not permit a third election. “If Netanyahu can’t form a government this time around, he will be unseated,” one senior party official said. Several others agree.

They have also said clearly that they will prefer to form a government with Blue and White without Netanyahu than to hold a third election.

In short, while the Israeli public shares the Trump administration’s view that Netanyahu is the best man to lead Israel today, a handful of Israeli politicians in key positions would be willing if not happy to see him go.

The clarity of his expected mandate will determine whether these politicians – motivated by ambition and envy — succeed or fail.
Daniel Pipes: Israelis find the security establishment ‘too timid’
Twenty years ago, the idea of Israel defeating the Palestinians appealed to maybe 3% of Jewish Israelis. The dominant Oslo spirit asserted that, given enough concessions, money and hope, Palestinians would abandon their enmity toward Israel and become its peaceable neighbors.

So pervasive was the spirit of accommodation, even defeatism, that as late as 2007 the prime minister of Israel could declare that “peace is achieved through concessions. We all know that.”

But relentless Palestinian vitriol and violence eventually disabused most Jewish Israelis of this gentle hope. By now, according to a poll commissioned by the Middle East Forum, barely a quarter of them still hold on to the Oslo dream. (The poll, with 703 likely Jewish voters and a 3.7% margin of error, was conducted in Hebrew by New Wave Research on July 7-11. It follows similar MEF-commissioned polls in 2017 and 2018.)

In contrast, it finds that a plurality of Jewish Israelis support that once-marginal idea about Palestinians needing to experience the bitter crucible of defeat – what I call “Israel Victory.”

This approach draws on common sense (conflicts go on so long as both sides expect to win) and the historical record (wars usually end when one side gives up) to argue that the Palestinian-Israeli conflict can be resolved only by Palestinians accepting the Jewish state of Israel.
PM: Israel ready to deal Gaza terror groups blow 'like never before'
Israel on Tuesday marked five years since Operation Protective Edge in the Gaza Strip in 2014.

In a ceremony attended by Israeli political and military leaders, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the operation was a "clear moral campaign of self-defense."

In July 2014, Israel launched a military operation against Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip in response to the launch of hundreds of rockets at Israel's south and the construction of cross-border terror tunnels dug from the southern Palestinian territory.

Noting the current situation with Gaza, Netanyahu said Israel is preparing for another operation.

"We are trying to reach calm, but are preparing to embark on a campaign – a large-scale military operation that will deliver a blow against Hamas and Islamic Jihad,” adding that Israel is preparing to strike the Palestinian militants like they never have before.


Shin Bet foils Iranian effort to recruit Israeli spies via social media
Iran has tried to recruit a wide network of agents in Israel via social networking sites, the Shin Bet (Israel security agency) announced on Wednesday.

The joint Shin Bet, Israel Police, IDF operation foiled the network which aimed to recruit individuals in Israel and the West Bank “for the benefit of Iranian intelligence,” the agency said in a statement.

The sources were asked to gather information on military bases, sensitive security installations, personnel, police stations, hospitals and more, as part of preparing targets for terrorist attacks in Israel by Iran.

According to the Shin Bet, while the network was directed by Iran, it operated from Syria and was led by an individual known as Abu-Jihad, who tried to recruit people by initiating contact from fictitious Facebook profiles and then speaking with the target through messaging applications.
Syrian TV reports Israeli attack on targets in country's south
Syrian state television said on Wednesday that Israel struck a strategic area in southern Syria overlooking the Golan Heights where Western intelligence sources previously said Iranian-backed militias are known to be based.

The newsflash on state-owned Ikhbariyah did not give details, but said the strike, involving surface-to-surface missiles began at 12:40 a.m. and was directed on Tal al-Hara, a strategic hill south of Damascus that had long been an outpost for Russian forces but was later taken by Iranian-backed militias, according to Western intelligence sources, and Quneitra province. The hill overlooks wide parts of southern Syria all the way to the Israeli Golan Heights.

According to the Syrian state news agency's report, the country's air-defense systems were activated against "hostile missiles" launched from the Israeli Golan Heights and Israeli aircraft west of Damascus. In addition, According to the report, two further explosions were heard around 1:00 a.m., one in the Quneitra area and a second in Tal al-Hara, adjacent to Quneitra.

According to state news agency SANA, damages were only material.
Hezbollah operative killed in southern Syria was part of Golan File
The Hezbollah operative killed in Syria on Monday was part of the group’s clandestine “Golan File,” which aims to establish and entrench a covert force on the Syrian Golan Heights that is designed to act against Israel when given the order.

Mashour Zidan, a resident of the Druze village of Khadr on the Syrian Golan Heights, was killed after a bomb planted in his car exploded as he was driving near the town of Sasa in southern Syria.

While Syria’s official news agency SANA blamed his death on a bomb, Syrian opposition reports stated that he was killed in an airstrike by an Israeli unmanned aerial vehicle.

Israel, which does not comment on foreign reports, has remained mum on his death. Hezbollah has also remained quiet and has not blamed Israel for the assassination.

According to the Lebanese news site al-Modon, Zidan was believed to have been killed fighting in Syria’s eastern Ghouta after he “mysteriously disappeared four months earlier.” But according to the report, Zidan had been summoned to Lebanon before he returned to Syria with a new identity.

His “mysterious” disappearance came around the time Israel announced that it uncovered Hezbollah’s Golan File network.
Israel: Iran smuggling dual-use items for Hezbollah arms by sea into Beirut port
Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations on Tuesday accused Iran of exploiting civilian companies and maritime channels to smuggle weapons manufacturing equipment to its Lebanese proxy group, Hezbollah.

In the quarterly meeting on the Middle East, Ambassador Danny Danon told the Security Council that Israeli intelligence has uncovered evidence showing Iran’s Quds Force has been using the port of Beirut to ship items to the terror group since last year.

“In the years 2018-2019, Israel found that dual-use items are smuggled into Lebanon to advance Hezbollah’s rocket and missile capabilities,” he said.

“Iran and the Quds Force have begun to advance the exploitation of the civilian maritime channels, and specifically the Port of Beirut,” Danon said. “The Port of Beirut has become the Port of Hezbollah.”

In a statement, the Israeli mission said “Syrian agents” purchased the dual use items from foreign companies under false pretenses, and handed it over to the terrorist group after picking up the shipments from the port.




Khaled Abu Toameh: Why Was a Saudi Attacked by Palestinians?
The assault on the Saudi blogger is yet another sign of mounting tensions between the Palestinians and some Arab countries, including Saudi Arabia. According to a few accounts, the Saudis have been launching a crackdown on Palestinians living in the kingdom by arresting and harassing dozens of them.

Reports about a rapprochement between several Arab states and Israel are worrying the Palestinians; they say they feel that their Arab bothers are turning their back on them. This sense of abandonment was reinforced by the refusal of Saudi Arabia and some Arab states to heed calls by the Palestinians to boycott the economic workshop in Bahrain.

A recent public opinion poll showed that 80% of surveyed Palestinians view the participation of Arab countries in the workshop as an abandonment of the Palestinian cause.

In a way, the Palestinians are right: their Arab brothers are indeed starting to turn their backs on them. The Palestinians might wish to ask themselves the important question: why this is happening? Here is a hint: Spitting in the face of a Saudi blogger and cursing him as an "animal" and "Zionist" is not behavior conducive to luring cash from his state -- or any other self-respecting entity -- that refuses to be slapped in the face while providing handouts.
PMW: PA warns: "The most dangerous season of Judaization" has begun
Three days ago, on the Jewish fast day 17th of Tammuz, which sets off a three-week-period of mourning for the destruction of Jerusalem and the two Temples, the Palestinian Authority warned that "the most dangerous season of Judaization" has begun:
"Among the extremist Jews, today is a Talmudic holiday considered the beginning of the most dangerous season of Judaization, and it is what is called 'the fast of Tammuz,' and is a prelude to the anniversary of what is called 'the destruction of the alleged Temple' (i.e., Tisha B'Av; see note below)." [Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 21, 2019]

The PA characterizes the visit of any Jew to the Temple Mount - the holiest place in Judaism - as "an invasion" and "a break in." They claim the Muslims have the sole right to the entire Temple Mount, including the Al-Aqsa Mosque and all its buildings and plazas, and even the Western Wall, which they refer to as the Al-Buraq Wall. Despite historical evidence, Palestinians claim that there never was a Jewish Temple on the Temple Mount and they deny any Jewish historical connection to the land of Israel in general and to Jerusalem and the Western Wall in particular.

As Palestinian Media Watch has shown, the PA refers to the Jewish Temple exclusively with the term "the alleged Temple" and to all Jews who want to exercise their right to visit the Jewish holy place as "extremist Jews." Any visit by a Jew to the Temple Mount is referred to as a "desecration" and any reference to Jewish history or discovery of Jewish artifacts are referred to by Palestinians as "Judaization."


Hamas Official on Iranian TV: Iran, Hizbullah Have Helped the Palestinian Resistance Advance
Saleh Al-Arouri, the Deputy Chairman of the Hamas Political Bureau, said in a July 22, 2019 interview on IRINN TV (Iran) that the Islamic resistance has advanced from throwing stones at the Zionist occupation to launching precise missiles at it thanks to the support and assistance of Iran, Hizbullah, and all others who love the Palestinian cause. He said that Hamas has a strong relationship with Hizbullah and with its leader, Hassan Nasrallah, and he said that he believes that the liberation of Jerusalem is near. Al-Arouri also praised Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, whom he met during his visit to Iran, and he expressed his gratitude for Khamenei's support of the Palestinians. He said that Khamenei is a great leader who is "second to none" in the Islamic world.


Iranian news agency blames Israel for death of UN nuclear watchdog chief
Iran’s semi-official Tasnim news agency claimed Wednesday that Israel was responsible for the death of UN nuclear watchdog chief Yukiya Amano several days ago at the age of 72.

The Tehran-based outlet, which defines its mission as “defending the Islamic Revolution against negative media propaganda campaign [sic],” cited unnamed “informed sources” who insisted that Amano, a Japanese diplomat who was extensively involved in negotiations over Iran’s controversial nuclear program, had been “eliminated” after refusing to buckle to “heavy pressure” from Jerusalem and Washington.

The International Atomic Energy Agency dismissed the Tasnin report. It told The Times of Israel: “[We] categorically deny these false reports. Director General Yukiya Amano passed away on 18 July as a result of his illness.”

Amano’s death comes at a time of increasing concerns and escalating tensions over Iran’s nuclear program, after US President Donald Trump left a 2015 deal with world powers that restricted the country’s nuclear uranium enrichment.

Amano was heavily involved in the years-long negotiations that led to the landmark Iran nuclear deal.
Rouhani: Iran ‘Ready’ for Negotiations, but Not if It Means ‘Surrender’
Iran is ready for “just” negotiations but not if they mean surrender, Iran‘s President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday, without saying what talks he had in mind.

Rouhani seemed to be referring to possible negotiations with the United States. US President Donald Trump withdrew from a landmark 2015 nuclear deal with Iran last year but has said he is willing to hold talks with the Islamic Republic.

“As long as I have the responsibility for the executive duties of the country, we are completely ready for just, legal and honest negotiations to solve the problems,” Rouhani said, according to his official website.

“But at the same time we are not ready to sit at the table of surrender under the name of negotiations.”
Iranian President: JCPOA Was Important Because UNSC Acknowledged Our Right to Enrich Uranium
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said in a July 14, 2019 address that aired on IRINN TV (Iran) that the JCPOA had been advantageous for Iran because it allowed Iran to legally enrich uranium. He said that the U.N. Security Council had said that Iran's right to enrich uranium must be supported, and he explained that this was an important legal and political achievement since the Security Council did not say this about any country other than Iran. Rouhani also said that the JCPOA benefited Iran from an economic perspective and that it enabled Iran to launch 14 phases at the South Pars Gas-Condensate field.


MEMRI: Saudi Journalist: Ouster Of Turkish President Erdogan Must Be Top Arab Priority
In his July 5, 2019 column in the Saudi daily Al-Jazirah, journalist Muhammad Aal Al-Sheikh addressed the waning of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's power in his country, manifested in his candidate's failure to win the municipal elections in Istanbul and in the increasing dissatisfaction of the younger generation in Turkey with his regime. Assessing that this situation could lead to Erdogan's downfall, Aal Al-Sheikh called on the Arab states to place this objective at the top of their agenda. The end of Erdogan's regime, he said, would leave Turkey's ally Qatar weak and isolated, which in turn might compel Qatar to stop sowing chaos and unrest in the region and to meet the demands of the countries that are boycotting it (Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the UAE and Bahrain), including the demand to stop financing terror.[1] Thus, the wars and conflicts in the region may come to an end, he said.

The following are excerpts from his column:[2]
"I will not be saying anything new if I state that the Qatari gas is a catastrophe that spread among the Arabs, for it is this [gas] that lit the fuse of the internecine wars and clashes throughout the Arab world.[3] But the failure of the so-called Arab Spring became a reality on the ground. The Arabs understood that these revolutions, funded by means of this gas, were the reason for all the civil wars, some of which are still ongoing, [for example] in Syria, Libya and Yemen.

"But there is a [another] central and very significant point, namely the central role played by Erdogan's Turkey, which firmly supported the Qatari mini-state. I am sure that Erdogan's imminent downfall will weaken Qatar's insane efforts to salvage what can still be salvaged of the Arab Spring revolutions on which it spent millions, if not billions, of dollars to no avail. For this reason, fighting Erdogan and removing him from his seat [as president] of Turkey must be a top priority for the Arabs, for this means winning and ending the civil wars and [stopping] the security chaos [in the Arab World]. As for the Qatari mini-state and its resources, without Turkey it will be like a trembling leaf drifting in the wind.
Turkish paper publishes letter claiming 'Jews training dogs to attack Muslims'
A popular Turkish newspaper has allowed a blatantly antisemitic reader’s letter to be published on its website.

In the letter to the daily pro-government Yeni Akit, the writer claimed that “Jews are training [stray] dogs [in the Turkish streets] to attack Muslims” and also makes reference to the antisemitic blood libel claims in which Jews would murder Christian children and drink their blood.

The reader claimed that there was a problem with street dogs in a district of northern Istanbul, that Jews living in the area were teaching them to attack Muslims, that “about 100 Muslims have been bitten so far,” and that this was “deliberate.”.

The paper has a reputation for being sympathetic to Islamic fundamentalism, for hate speech and also reportedly has close ties to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and is a staunch supporter of his ruling party.

Following the publication of the letter, several readers commented and criticized Yeni Akit for publishing such a thing.

“This is shameful, it’s outright racism,” one person wrote in the comments section, while another questioned, “[why] our country is encouraging racism?”



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