– The Middle East English Language Press: What they are saying

NEWS IN BRIEF | WHAT THEY ARE SAYING

JULY 28, 2011.

Israel, South Sudan establish full diplomatic relations

Al Bawaba (Jordan)The Israeli Foreign Ministry announced Thursday that Israel has established full diplomatic relations with the government of the newly established South Sudan. “The practical aspects of the relations such as accrediting ambassadors will soon be discussed through the diplomatic channels,” the Israeli Foreign Ministry said in a statement. In recent days, an Israeli delegation visited the South Sudan capital of Juba and held talks with senior government officials there. Earlier this month, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced the official recognition of South Sudan. “We wish it success,” Netanyahu said, according to Haaretz. “It is a peace-seeking country and we would be happy to cooperate with it in order to ensure its development and prosperity.”

Vandals attack UNRWA children’s summer camp in Gaza

Palestine News Network – Chris Gunness, UNRWA’s Spokesman, condemned, in a statement issued on Thursday, an attack by an unknown gunmen on a summer facility run by the agency in the northern part of the Gaza Strip at dawn today. “We condemn this attack, which is an attack on the children of Gaza as much as on the United Nations.” read the statement. ”We call on the authorities in Gaza to investigate and bring those responsible to account. We will repair and rebuild the damaged infrastructure and go ahead with the event as planned today.” According to local sources at some time between midnight and dawn today a group of masked gunmen attacked and vandalised the Summer Games facility in north-west Gaza, where later today UNRWA will attempt a world record for the largest number of children flying kites. The attackers damaged a large billboard, burnt a UN flag and torched part of the stage. None of the UN security personnel at the venue were harmed, the UNRWA said on its website. So far no Palestinian group announced responsibility for the attack, this the second incident this week. On Tuesday a group of unknown gunmen torched the Paris Resort in Gaza City.

Egyptian forces discover 5 smuggling tunnels on Gaza border

Ma’an News Agency (Bethlehem)- Egyptian security forces uncovered 5 smuggling tunnels on Thursday morning and confiscated large amounts of junk metal destined to be smuggled into Gaza. “Egyptian border guards in Rafah had received information about a group of Palestinians and Egyptians smuggling large amounts of junk metal into Gaza via a tunnel in the Al-Barahmeh neighborhood on the Egypt-Gaza border,” a Ma’an correspondent said. “A large number of Egyptian security forces rushed to the scene and found an entrance to a tunnel with around 150 large bags of around a ton and a half of junk metal that were to be smuggled into Gaza via the tunnel.”

PFLP armed wing claims responsibility for firing at soldiers

Ma’an News Agency (Bethlehem) – The armed wing of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, the Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades, have claimed responsibility for firing at Israeli soldiers on Thursday in the Ash Shujaiyeh neighborhood near Gaza City. The group targeted an engineering unit of Israeli soldiers with sniper fire. A statement by the group said they would “continue with resistance and respond to the Israeli [occupation] crimes.”

Rocket fired from Gaza hits Israel

Khaleej Times Online (UAE) – A rocket fired from the Gaza Strip hit southern Israel on Thursday without causing injuries or damage, the Israeli military said. The rocket landed in an open field in the Hof Ashkelon region, the military said, adding that the projectile was the 24th to hit Israel this month. July has seen an uptick in the number of rockets and other projectiles fired at Israel from Gaza after several months of calm following a flare-up of violence in April, when an anti-tank missile fired from Gaza hit an Israeli school bus, killing a teenager.

 Seculars Israelis to tour the West Bank colonies

Gulf News (UAE) – An Israeli colonist organization, which calls itself the Israeli National Acquaintance Project, has allocated $2 million dollars to bring Israelis to tour the West Bank colonies, according to the Israeli daily Haaretz. It is expected that at least half a million Israeli tourists will be visiting the colonies. The colonists organization of ‘Mishkefet’ announced on Thursday that this plan is expected to attract the secular Israelis and show them blossoming colonies, the Jewish heritage and agricultural sites. Yossi Dagan, one of the founders of the organization said “the big enemy to the Israeli colonies is ignorance. No one arrives in Judea and Samaria (West Bank), sees the colonies that are blossoming there and remains indifferent.” A senior official from the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) strongly condemned the organization’s plans stressing that whatever the Israelis do will never legalize the status of the Israeli colonies in the West Bank, which are illegal and will remain so.

The cancer of Christian Zionist terror

ABNA (Iran) – Gloating over the recent killings in Norway of dozens of innocent people at the hands of an Israel-inspired Christian Zionist terrorist, Glenn Beck, the American right-wing talk show host, compared the victims of the shooting at a Norwegian summer camp to Hitler Youth in his radio program on Monday, according to a Daily Telegraph report. The “Hitler Youth” organization was a paramilitary youth organization comprising teenagers and children, entrusted with task of harassing and attacking and terrorizing perceived or real enemy of the Third Reich. It existed from 1922 to 1945. Beck, a self-proclaimed Christian Zionist and Israel-firster, described the brutal carnage “as a shooting at a political camp, which sounds a little like the Hitler Youth. I mean who sends their kids to a political camp? Disturbing.” He stopped short of praising the murderer, suggesting that the victims got what they deserved. Torbjon Eriksen, a former press secretary to Jens Stoltenberg, Norway’s Prime Minister, dismissed Beck’s comments as “ignorant, incorrect and hurtful.” “Young political activists have gathered at Utoya for over 60 years to learn about and be part of democracy, the very opposite of what the Hitler Youth was about,” he told The Daily Telegraph. “Glenn Beck’s comments are ignorant, incorrect and extremely hurtful.”

UK slams Iran for stance toward Israeli athletes

Jerusalem Post – The UK Foreign Office on Wednesday criticized the Iranian stance toward Israeli athletes and the Olympic spirit. The criticism came after the president of the World Jewish Congress called on world sports federations to prevent Iran from participating in international competitions until Tehran ends its ban on Iranian athletes competing against Israelis. Earlier this week, Iranian swimmer Mohammed Alirezaei refused to participate in a heat against Israeli counterpart Gal Nevo at the FINA World Swimming Championships. A spokesperson for the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office told The Jerusalem Post that while the issue should be taken up by the International Olympic Committee, the incident “suggests that the Iranians care as much about the spirit and point of the Olympic games as they do about nuclear non-proliferation and human rights.”

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