News

    Israel to Ease Some West Bank Restrictions as Rice Visits Mideast

    Multimedia

    Audio

    U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice held talks Sunday with Israeli, Palestinian and Jordanian leaders during her second trip the Middle East in less than a month.  VOA's Jim Teeple reports from Jerusalem that Israel says it will ease some restrictions on Palestinians in the West Bank in a bid to move peace talks forward. 

    Israel says it will remove about 50 roadblocks in the West Bank, allow unrestricted access to the West Bank city of Jericho and ease permit restrictions for some Palestinians who need to travel through Israeli-controlled territory.  The measures were announced following talks between Secretary Rice, Israel's Foreign and Defense Ministers and Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad in Jerusalem.

    Rice says the measures will help move the peace process forward.  

    "What we have to have is meaningful progress toward a better life for the Palestinian people for economic viability for Palestinians, even as we move toward the establishment of a state," Rice said. "There is a shared responsibility here for an atmosphere and a reality that can lead to the establishment of a Palestinian state based on security for Israelis and Palestinians alike and economic viability for Palestinians."
     
    Palestinians have pledged to work to improve security in the West Bank and impose order in the West Bank town of Jenin.  Last week Israel said it will allow a specially trained force of police loyal to moderate Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to travel to Jenin in an effort to curb militancy there.

    Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni says Israel wants to cooperate with moderate Palestinians to improve their economy, but Palestinians must improve security.

    "The formula is to do whatever we can as long as it does not affect our own security because the other responsibility is to find a way to give security to Israeli citizens, but I think Israel and the Palestinians both understand that the Palestinian economy is part of our interest and Israel's security is part of the Palestinian interests," Livni said.

    Livni also says Israel supports the idea of compensating Israeli settlers who agree to leave settlements in the West Bank, although she says the idea still has a long way to go.

    Continued Israeli construction activity in settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem has become a major point of contention in the talks between Israelis and Palestinians - with Palestinians saying such construction violates existing agreements between the two sides - and could jeopardize a final peace agreement.  Israel says it will continue to build in areas it intends to permanently keep as part of an eventual settlement with the Palestinians.

    After her talks with Jordan's King Abdullah and President Abbas in Amman, Rice returns to Jerusalem for talks Monday with the Israeli and Palestinian negotiating teams.  She then returns to Amman for a final consultation with Mr. Abbas. 

     

     

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Press Freedom in Myanmar Fragile, Limitedi
    X
    Katie Arnold
    May 04, 2016 12:31 PM
    As Myanmar begins a new era with a democratically elected government, many issues of the past confront the new leadership. Among them is press freedom in a country where journalists have been routinely harassed or jailed.
    Video

    Video Press Freedom in Myanmar Fragile, Limited

    As Myanmar begins a new era with a democratically elected government, many issues of the past confront the new leadership. Among them is press freedom in a country where journalists have been routinely harassed or jailed.
    Video

    Video Taliban Threats Force Messi Fan to Leave Afghanistan

    A young Afghan boy, who recently received autographed shirts and a football from his soccer hero Lionel Messi, has fled his country due to safety concerns. He and his family are now taking refuge in neighboring Pakistan. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from Islamabad.
    Video

    Video Major Rubbish Burning Experiment Captures Destructive Greenhouse Gases

    The world’s first test to capture environmentally harmful carbon dioxide gases from the fumes of burning rubbish took place recently in Oslo, Norway. The successful experiment at the city's main incinerator plant, showcased a method for capturing most of the carbon dioxide. VOA’s Deborah Block has more.
    Video

    Video EU Visa Block Threatens To Derail EU-Turkey Migrant Deal

    Turkish citizens could soon benefit from visa-free travel to Europe as part of the recent deal between the EU and Ankara to stem the flow of refugees. In return, Turkey has pledged to keep the migrants on Turkish soil and crack down on those who are smuggling them. Brussels is set to publish its latest progress report Wednesday — but as Henry Ridgwell reports from London, many EU lawmakers are threatening to veto the deal over human rights concerns.
    Video

    Video Tensions Rising Ahead of South China Sea Ruling

    As the Philippines awaits an international arbitration ruling on a challenge to China's claims to nearly all of the South China Sea, it is already becoming clear that regardless of which way the decision goes, the dispute is intensifying. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
    Video

    Video Painting Captures President Lincoln Assassination Aftermath

    A newly restored painting captures the moments following President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination in 1865. It was recently unveiled at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, where America’s 16th president was shot. It is the only known painting by an eyewitness that captures the horror of that fateful night. VOA’s Julie Taboh tells us more about the painting and what it took to restore it to its original condition.
    Video

    Video Elephant Summit Results in $5M in Pledges, Presidential Support

    Attended and supported by three African presidents, a three-day anti-poaching summit has concluded in Kenya, resulting in $5 million in pledges and a united message to the world that elephants are worth more alive than dead. The summit culminated at the Nairobi National Park with the largest ivory burn in history. VOA’s Jill Craig attended the summit and has this report about the outcomes.
    Video

    Video Displaced By War, Syrian Artist Finds Inspiration Abroad

    Saudi-born Syrian painter Mohammad Zaza is among the millions who fled their home for an uncertain future after Syria's civil war broke out. Since fleeing Syria, Zaza has lived in Lebanon, Egypt, Jordan and now Turkey where his latest exhibition, “Earth is Blue like an Orange,” opened in Istanbul. He spoke with VOA about how being displaced by the Syrian civil war has affected the country's artists.
    Video

    Video Ethiopia’s Drought Takes Toll on Children

    Ethiopia is dealing with its worst drought in decades, thanks to El Nino weather patterns. An estimated 10 million people urgently need food aid. Six million of them are children, whose development may be compromised without sufficient help, Marthe van der Wolf reports for VOA from the Metahara district.
    Video

    Video Little Havana - a Slice of Cuban Culture in Florida

    Hispanic culture permeates everything in Miami’s Little Havana area: elderly men playing dominoes as they discuss politics, cigar rollers deep at work, or Cuban exiles talking with presidential candidates at a Cuban coffee window. With the recent rapprochement between Cuba and United States, one can only expect stronger ties between South Florida and Cuba.
    Video

    Video California Republicans Weigh Presidential Choices Amid Protests

    Republican presidential candidates have been wooing local party leaders in California, a state that could be decisive in selecting the party's nominee for U.S. president. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports delegates to the California party convention have been evaluating choices, while front-runner Donald Trump drew hundreds of raucous protesters Friday.
    Video

    Video ‘The Lights of Africa’ - Through the Eyes of 54 Artists

    An exhibition bringing together the work of 54 African artists, one from each country, is touring the continent after debuting at COP21 in Paris. Called "Lumières d'Afrique," the show centers on access to electricity and, more figuratively, ideas that enlighten. Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, the exhibition's first stop.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora