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Today’s Top Stories
1. Peace talks resume on Tuesday in Washington.
According to senior officials in Jerusalem, the meeting in Washington is expected to deal primarily with the agenda for holding negotiations, including the subjects to be discussed and the timetable. The talks are expected to last about nine months, and to open with discussions of both the borders of the Palestinian state and Israel’s security demands.
2. Bulgaria released the names and photos of the two terrorists wanted for their involvement in the Burgas bombing.
The two are identified as Meliad FARAH (also known as Hussein HUSSEIN), born on November 5, 1980, Australian citizen, and Hassan El HAJJ HASSAN, born on March 22, 1988, Canadian citizen, according to the media statement of the Interior Ministry.
3. Hurriyet: Ankara’s stubbornness is holding up Israeli-Turkish reconciliation:
The reason for the deadlock in compensation talks between Turkey and Israel is the latter’s insistency in redressing the damages of the Mavi Marmara victims as an ex gratia payment and not as a result of its wrongful act, a senior Turkish government official has said.
If Israel’s payment to the families of nine Turkish citizens who died aboard the Mavi Marmara are viewed as compensation for a wrongful act, it would set a legal precedent that’s neither necessary, nor in Israel’s interest. If the payment is considered ex gratia (not from any legal obligation but as an act of kindness) it would allow both sides to save some face and move on.
Israel and the Palestinians
• The Times of London visited SodaStream, one of the highest profile Israeli businesses in the West Bank that would be impacted by EU labeling laws.
• Philippe Karsenty,who was found guilty of libeling France 2 TV over its Mohammed al-Dura footage, filed an appeal with France’s Supreme Court. The JTA adds that the Prime Minister’s Office is still battling France 2 as well:
France 2’s attorneys threatened to sue the latest panel, set up by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Lawyers for the state-owned station said the station did not receive the opportunity to present its version of events.
The legal adviser of the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office this month responded by listing six requests by Israeli officials for input on the al-Dura case from France 2. Some of the requests were made to France’s outgoing ambassador to Israel, Christophe Bigot.
• Want peace? Get rid of Hamas, argues Jeffrey Goldberg.
• Quite a bit of commentary/analysis giving John Kerry a thumbs up: See David Ignatius , the Wall St. Journal (click via Google News), and Eli Lake. See also Benny Avni, Time, the Globe & Mail, and an Ottawa Citizen staff-ed.
- Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah ridicules distinctions between Hezbollah’s armed and political wings.
- Syrian rocket attack on refugee camp kills 15 Palestinians.
- US suspends F-16 fighter jet sale to Egypt.