European Jewish Congress
Israeli Press Review of 23.03.2016
Israeli Press Review
Israeli Press Review of 23.03.2016

Major Headlines
  • Netanyahu: UN resolution will kill peace chances

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said on Tuesday he hoped the United States would continue to reject any move towards a UN Security Council resolution backing Palestinian statehood, Yediot A&haronot reports.

"A Security Council resolution to pressure Israel would further harden Palestinian positions and thereby could actually kill the chances of peace for many, many years," he told a meeting of the powerful American-Israel Public Affairs Committee lobbying group.

Netanyahu's speech returned the conference focus to policy after a turn to partisan politics on Monday when Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump took to the stage and denounced President Barack Obama, a Democrat.

AIPAC's leaders distanced the group from his remarks before Netanyahu's speech on Tuesday.

Via satellite from Israel, Netanyahu also said he was ready to begin talks "immediately, without preconditions" for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but insisted Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas did not back the idea.

"Peace won't come through UN Security Council resolutions but through direct negotiations between the parties. The best formula for achieving peace remains two states for two peoples in which a demilitarized Palestinian state finally recognises the Jewish state," Netanyahu said.

Click here to read the full article in Yediot Aharonot


  • Ya’alon accuses Breaking the Silence of treason

Israeli Defence Minister Moshe Ya'alon has accused the Breaking the Silence NGO of committing treason, following allegations broadcast on Channel 2 that they are collecting operational information about the Israeli army, the i24 news website reports.

Ya'alon made the charge while speaking to high school students in the north of the country.

 "What was revealed on Channel 2 is that [Breaking the Silence] is also asking the soldiers questions… that are considered a military secret," Ya'alon said, quoted in Haaretz. "[I]f you distribute this material to the outside, it is treason."

But "keeping it for themselves is also [treason]," Ya'alon added. "Who is guarding this materials? Why do [they] need to know which equipment we use? 

Zionist Union MK Tzipi Livni urged caution when using words such as "traitor" and "treason," Haaretz says, before making an apparent veiled reference to their use prior to the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in 1995.

Breaking the Silence, an organisation made up of IDF veterans, has a stated objective of gathering testimonies from members of the IDF who have served in the West Bank and Gaza, in order to document the conduct of soldiers in these areas.

Responding to the fresh allegations, Breaking the Silence denied that they had gathered classified information and said that they work closely with Israel's Military Censor.

The group’s spokesperson Achiya Schatz hit back at the criticisms, telling i24news that "the Prime Minister and the Minister of Defence are using the security services as a political tool and this is a definite and dangerous crossing of a red line that needs to be investigated.

Click here to read the full article in i24


  • UN forces return to Syrian border

A year and a half after the hasty departure of UN troops from the Syrian Golan Heights, the UN force supervising the separation of forces is prepared to disperse its forces on the Syrian side of the border, Yediot Aharonot reports.

In recent weeks, officers and soldiers from the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) made several visits to facilities and vantage points they staffed from September 2014 in the Syrian Golan Heights.

The United Nations intends to return the observation force, which is composed of soldiers from five countries, to the sites it occupied from 1974 to 2014.

Israel's security establishment has a great interest in returning UNDOF personnel to the Syrian border, as part of efforts to create a haven from the chaos that reigns on the Syrian side.

Click here to read the full article in Yediot Aharonot

Wednesday, March 23, 2016
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