Friday, September 16, 2011

Netanyahu Open to Upping Palestinian Status; Ambassador Back in Jordan

As anti-Israeli sentiment cools off in Jordan, Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu is reportedly considering an upgrade in Palestinian recognition if the Palestinian Authority backs off a plan to seek statehood at the United Nations.

Netanyahu expressed his willingness to accept a plan that would upgrade Palestinian status during talks the past few days with the European Union's foreign policy director Catherine Ashton, according to a report today in Haaretz.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has a been discussing a new comprehensive roadmap to negotiations and statehood with European and American officials that would avoid a unilateral declaration of statehood at the UN, according to the London based Arabic daily Al Hayat.

The plan calls for the PA and Israel to resume negotiations for a minimum of six months, followed by a halt to hostilities and the creation of a Palestinian state based on the 1967 borders, the Jerusalem Post reported.

Netanyahu will address the UN General Assembly next Friday, the same day the Palestinians will make their pitch for statehood. 

In a sign of a return towards normalcy, Israel's Ambassador Daniel Nevo returned to Amman today a day after a so-called million-man march fizzled into a protest of several hundred anti-Israeli demonstrators.

All but one member of the diplomatic staff was evacuated Wednesday from the Israeli embassy in Amman amid fears of a violent protest similar to the mob over the weekend that ransacked the Israeli mission in Cairo.

Jordanian police protected the Isreali embassy as the protesters app arched, demanding that Jordan scrap its historic peace treaty with Israel. 

Agitators sought to take their cue from the protesters in Cairo, using the fiery remarks by Major Gen. Uzi Dayan to provoke demonstrations in Jordan. Dayan called for Jordan to invade and take over the West Bank and Gaza to keep the Palestinians from declaring statehood at the UN.

Dayan's idea was met with disdain from the government in Amman.

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