International police agency Interpol voted Wednesday to include Palestine as a member state, in a new boost to Palestinian efforts for international recognition and influence amid long-stalled negotiations with Israel for full statehood.
Despite an all-time low in relations between the Riyadh government and the Palestinian terrorist organization Hamas, a leading Saudi newspaper has offered a cautious welcome to the current reconciliation process between Hamas and its rival Fatah as they prepare for next week’s session of the Palestine National Council in Gaza — the first such meeting in three years.
U.S. President Donald Trump's senior adviser Jared Kushner asked Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas during their meeting in Ramallah on Thursday to freeze diplomatic initiatives against Israel for a period of some four months, in exchange for an American commitment to submit a comprehensive diplomatic plan within that time frame to kick-start the moribund peace process, a senior Palestinian official told Israel Hayom over the weekend.
The Palestinian leadership in Ramallah is considering dismantling the Palestinian Authority, if there is no political horizon to establish an independent Palestinian state, Ahmad Majdalani, a confidant of PA President Mahmoud Abbas, said on Wednesday, a day before senior Trump administration officials are due in Ramallah.
While Western envoys are pressing Israel to help alleviate raging Palestinian poverty caused by their own violent uprising, Arab states are withholding the bulk of $1 billion pledged towards the renewed intifada because they do not trust PLO chief Yasser Arafat with their money.
Five paramilitary Palestinian policemen were killed overnight in an apparent ambush by Israeli troops in the town of Betunia, near Palestinian-ruled Ramallah.
The Lebanese army has detained 12 people, including a Palestinian officer, accusing them of spying for Israel, the military said Thursday. The army statement did not say when or where the 12 were arrested, but said they were caught with sophisticated wireless and camouflaged photography equipment.