‘Normalization’ of Arab-Israeli ties bothers Palestinians

The son of Palestinian protester Othman Ladadwah, who was killed in a clash with Israeli soldiers, kisses his body during his funeral in the village of Al-Mazraa Al-Gharbeya, in the occupied West Bank October 27, 2018. (REUTERS)
Updated 29 October 2018
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‘Normalization’ of Arab-Israeli ties bothers Palestinians

  • Netanyahu has long sought alliances with other Arab states which, like Israel, face an emboldened Iran, stressing that such ties could enable peace with the Palestinians
  • Netanyahu’s visit to Oman was the first by an Israeli premier since 1996, when acting Prime Minister Shimon Peres visited and the countries agreed to establish trade representative offices

RAMALLAH: Palestinian officials on Saturday expressed concern about a potential “normalization” of relations between Israel and Arab countries, after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited Oman.
Netanyahu met with Oman’s Sultan Qaboos late Thursday, an encounter that was kept secret until after he returned to Israel, where it was presented as a major coup for the Jewish state’s efforts to bolster ties with the Arab world.
“The value system and the Arab political and social pact don’t exist anymore,” said Mohammad Shtayyeh, an adviser to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, in a statement.
“It is the start of a public normalization and the end of the Arab peace initiative,” he added, referring to a 2002 Arab League proposal.
The 2002 initiative affirmed Arab states would restore diplomatic ties with Israel in exchange for a peace settlement creating a Palestinian state that returned all land occupied or annexed in and since the 1967 war.
Deputy speaker of the Palestinian Parliament Hassan Khreisheh on Saturday lamented an “unprecedented haste by Arab countries to normalize ties with Israel.”
Netanyahu’s visit to Oman was the first by an Israeli premier since 1996, when acting Prime Minister Shimon Peres visited and the countries agreed to establish trade representative offices.
Oman closed those offices in 2000 after the outbreak of the second Palestinian intifada.
Netanyahu has long sought alliances with other Arab states which, like Israel, face an emboldened Iran, stressing that such ties could enable peace with the Palestinians. Israel currently has full diplomatic relations with only two Arab states, Egypt and Jordan.


Bahrain’s King Hamad orders reinstatement of citizenship of 551 convicts

Updated 21 April 2019
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Bahrain’s King Hamad orders reinstatement of citizenship of 551 convicts

JEDDAH: Bahrain’s King Hamad issued an order on Sunday to reinstate the citizenship of 551 convicts whose nationality had been revoked as per court rulings, reported the state news agency.
The royal decree is in line with the provisions of Article 24 of Law 58/2006 with respect to the Protection of the Community against Terrorist Acts, stipulating that rulings related to citizenship withdrawal will not be effective unless they are approved by the king.
King Hamad had already given directives to the competent authorities to evaluate the situation of convicts whose citizenship was revoked before the final implementation of the court judgment.
“The study and evaluation of the situation of convicts should be based on criteria pertaining to the seriousness, impact and consequences of the crimes, as well as on the danger the convict may pose on national security,” said the Bahrain News Agency.
King Hamad also instructed the minister of interior to study and evaluate the citizenship revocation rulings and to prepare a list of reinstatement beneficiaries.