Thursday, September 16, 2010

Clinton meets with Abbas in Ramallah, then stops in Amman to brief King Abdullah on the Sharm al-Shaykh talks. Clinton and Mubarak issue statements saying that they have jointly recommended a short 3 or 4 mo. extension to the settlement freeze during which Israel and the PA would focus on border issues in hopes of solving which settlements would stay and go under final status. Abbas states: “We all know there is no alternative to peace other than negotiating peace, so we have no alternative but to continue peace efforts.” (NYT, WP 9/17)

Mitchell goes to Damascus to brief Syrian pres. Bashar al-Asad on the peace talks, saying for the first time that the U.S. intends to push for renewed Israeli-Syrian peace talks parallel to Israeli-Palestinian talks. (Asia Times 9/16)

In the West Bank, the IDF conducts synchronized late-night patrols in 2 villages e. of Qalqilya, making no arrests; similar late-night patrols without incident in villages nr. Salfit; late-night arrest raids, house searches in Hebron, Tulkarm. (PCHR 9/23; OCHA 9/24)