Jimmy Carter Says Palestinians Live In A ‘Cage’

Yesterday, from Damascus, Syria Jimmy Carter said in no uncertain terms…

Jimmy Carter says Palestinians live in a ‘cage’

Former President Jimmy Carter said on Tuesday that Palestinians are "living in a cage" in Gaza and that the militant group Hamas must be included in all major efforts for peace.

Carter was in Syria with an international group of veteran statesmen known as the Elders, which includes Ireland’s former President Mary Robinson.

"We believe that Hamas should be included in all the major efforts to peace … It is part of the Palestinian people," Carter said. He added that "1.5 million Palestinians are held in a cage or prison while their human rights are taken away. […]

Carter’s remarks came as reconciliation talks between the two Palestinian factions(Fatah and Hamas) were postponed on Tuesday."

The indefatigable and incessant Carter is on another Middle East Peace blitzkrieg, with the Elders…

She (Mary Robinson) will be joined by her fellow Elders Lakhdar Brahimi, Ela Bhatt and Jimmy Carter.

From 16-22 October 2010, the group will travel together to Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Israel and the occupied Palestinian Territories to meet with ordinary Israelis and Palestinians, civil society, and political leaders.

Today, the Elders met with Abbas in Ramallah…

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Wednesday met with the International Elders Group and discussed with them the stalled peace process and achieving the inter-Palestinian reconciliation.

Palestinian negotiator Nabil Shaath told a joint news conference after the meeting, which was held in the West Bank city of Ramallah, that Abbas briefed the elders’ delegation on the latest developments related to the stalled peace process with Israel. […]

Shaath said that the delegation backed the Palestinian stance that called for halting the Jewish settlement and ending Gaza blockade.

Meanwhile, Carter told reporters that the question of reconciliation between Abbas’s Fatah party and its rival Islamic Hamas movement "was also discussed with Abbas and was discussed earlier with the Egyptians."

Now, something that truly flew under the radar of our Western MSM was the fact that Hamas and Fatah were to meet in Damascus, to further a reconciliation pact…

Fatah declines Hamas invitation to hold reconciliation talks in Gaza

Senior Hamas official Dr. Salah Al Bardawil said Fatah refused Hamas’s proposal to hold a meeting aimed at achieving Palestinian reconciliation in the Gaza Strip.

The meeting was initially scheduled to be held in the Syrian capital of Damascus at the recommendation of the Fatah movement.

Bardawil said in a press release Wednesday that Hamas made several contacts with Fatah to bypass disputes over the meeting’s venue, noting that Fatah’s request to change the venue of the conference from Damascus may have been “a kind of extortion”.

He added that Fatah’s request could be an attempt to hamper significantly progressing efforts towards reconciliation realized in recent talks. The movement has put forth no reasonable grounds for its position.

I suppose that is why Carter insisted that Hamas be included at the table. Despite the Abu Mazen rebuffing on the Damascus meet-up, Hamas is still willing…

Mashaal: Hamas willing to accept peace deal with Israel

Hamas Politburo Chief Khaled Mashaal says his group is willing to accept any peace agreement achieved between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, as long as it enjoys a Palestinian consensus, Ynet learned Wednesday.

In an interview with Newsweek Magazine, Mashaal predicted that the inception of a Palestinian state was not something that could happen in the foreseeable future, and urged Washington to "hear from us directly.” Hamas, he said, already talks to Washington via unofficial channels, including former president Jimmy Carter.

Neither Israel nor the PA want to see Hamas become an active participant in the peace talks, but according to Mashaal trying to circumvent Hamas completely always proves to be a mistake, since "Hamas is a key player."

Hmmm… Do you suppose that is why Fatah called off the meet up in Damascus at the last possible minute, and. why Jimmy Carter stressed the need for Hamas’ participation…?

What a shame…! But the intransigence towards reconciliation wasn’t confined to just Fatah…

South Africa mission comes to Ramallah to aid Palestinian reconciliation

South Africa’s representative to the Palestinian Authority had planned to meet with Hamas leaders but Israel would not let him enter Gaza strip.

South Africa’s diplomatic mission in Ramallah is trying to assist the reconciliation talks between Hamas and Fatah, on the assumption that internal Palestinian unity is necessary to successfully fight the Israeli occupation. […]

Boraine had been scheduled to travel to Gaza yesterday for meetings with Hamas figures there, but said he learned Tuesday night that Israel would not let him enter the Strip.

Even Madame Secretary Clinton frankly admitted today…

Clinton: No Magic Solution to Impasse in Talks

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who spoke on Wednesday with a group of PA Arabs who support the direct negotiations with Israel, said that talks are the only way to promote peace, and that although they are currently at an impasse, they are necessary.

"We have no illusions about solving the issues and it is not a secret that we are in a difficult period," said Clinton, adding: "There is no magic solution to the impasse in the talks, but we work every day to create the conditions for their success."

*gah*

(cross-posted at Whirled Peas)

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