Churches for Middle East Peace

Five Things to Know About Biden's Yemen Move

A look at changes beginning in the new US administration’s policies, more elections starting, and more news in this week’s bulletin.

Image: A soldier stands guard as Houthi supporters attend a demonstration against the United States over its decision to designate the Houthis a foreign terrorist organization in Sanaa, Yemen, on Monday, February 8, 2021. (Hani Mohammed / AP)


Five things to know about Biden's Yemen move
The Hill

“President Biden's announcement this week that he is ending U.S. support for offensive operations in Yemen’s civil war was his first major foreign policy move in office. Coupled with a commitment to support a diplomatic resolution more forcefully and ensure delivery of humanitarian assistance, the decision fulfilled a key campaign promise and was welcomed by foreign allies, human rights groups, and lawmakers from both parties."

Image: A soldier stands guard as Houthi supporters attend a demonstration against the United States over its decision to designate the Houthis a foreign terrorist organization in Sanaa, Yemen, on Monday, February 8, 2021. (Hani Mohammed / AP)

biden and abbas 2016

In first public contact in years, senior Palestinian, US officials share call
Times of Israel

“In what appeared to be the first official contact between Washington and Ramallah under the newly inaugurated administration of President Joe Biden, two senior Palestinian and American officials spoke on the phone to discuss the relationship between the two parties on Monday (February 1). Palestinian Authority Civil Affairs Commission chairman Hussein al-Sheikh said in a statement that said he had spoken to US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Israeli and Palestinian Affairs Hady Amr.”

Read CMEP’s statement urging the Biden Administration to reach out to Palestinian leadership.

Image: Then-US vice president Joe Biden meets with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, in the West Bank city of Ramallah, on March 9, 2016. (FLASH90)

call to stop church attacks

Jerusalem Christians condemn attack on church
Christian Today

“The Patriarch of Jerusalem and other Christian leaders are calling on the Israeli government to put a stop to attacks on churches in the holy city. A Romanian Orthodox Church in the Musrara neighbourhood of East Jerusalem was the victim of an arson attack on 2 February. It follows an arson attack on a church in the Garden of Gethsemane in December and anti-Christian graffiti sprayed onto the doors of the Dormition Abbey, a Benedictine community in Jerusalem, last May. The graffiti said ‘kill the pagans’ and ‘death to the Christian unbelievers, enemies of Israel’.”

Read CMEP’s December statement denouncing the church attacks. 

Image: Churches in Jerusalem have been targeted several times in the last year. (Unsplash/Sander Crombach)

What's Happening at CMEP

Webinar: Israel and the American Evangelical Movement:

Rev. Dr. Mae Elise Cannon and other guests assessed how the Evangelical movement has impacted the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to date - and what their involvement may look like going forward.


Book Club with CMEP Journeys:

Join CMEP as we read together over the course of the next few months, then discuss them together. We are also excited to include a children’s book in the mix! All authors will be at the events, including Colum McCann, Rashid Khalidi, and others, so this is a great opportunity to ask any questions you have about their work!

Take Action: Tell Biden Administration to Release Funding to UNRWA:

As President, Biden can release the funding for UNRWA and bilateral assistance to the West Bank and Gaza at his own discretion, as it has already been appropriated by Congress. Let him know you support the restoration of funding, which provides vital aid and relief to Palestinians.


As we enter the Lenten season, please honor CMEP's work for peace and justice with a donation.

palestinian post codes

In assertion of sovereignty, Palestinians launch postcodes in West Bank
Times of Israel

“The Palestinian Authority announced Sunday (February 7) that it would begin using its own postal codes, a move at easing the delivery of parcels in the disputed territories, as well as asserting sovereignty. International mail sent to or from the West Bank currently has to pass through Jordan or Israel. But the PA said Sunday that it had asked the Universal Postal Union to notify its member states that Palestinian postal codes were coming into force.”

Image: An employee of Palestine Post carries a courier bag at a post office in the West Bank town of Nablus, on February 7, 2021. (Jaafar Ashtiyeh/ AFP)

herding village demolished

IDF demolishes Palestinian herding village for fifth time in 3 months

“The Civil Administration demolished the illegal Palestinian herding village of Khirbet Humsa in the Jordan Valley for the fifth time in three months on Monday (February 8). Nine tents were removed, which according to the left-wing NGO housed 61 people, including 31 minors. It added that five tents and two shacks for livestock were removed. Three vehicles were also confiscated. The Civil Administration had demolished the village in November, but residents rebuilt. Last week the Civil Administration removed the tents on Monday and returned twice on Wednesday to confiscate tents.”

Image: Khirbat Humsa (Aref Daraghmeh/B'TSELEM)

terms of palestinian election

Fatah and Hamas agree on terms of 1st Palestinian election in 15 years
Times of Israel

“Fourteen Palestinian factions attending a summit in Cairo announced on Tuesday night (February 9) that they have reached an agreement that would set the guidelines for the first Palestinian national elections in nearly 15 years. Fatah Secretary-General Jibril Rajoub said in a statement that the rival Fatah and Hamas factions had reached ‘understandings’ that would allow them to move forward with the election process. ‘I tell the Palestinians, trust what we have achieved,’ Rajoub, who led his movement’s delegation to the Cairo summit, told reporters after the talks concluded.”

Image: Palestinian faction leaders gather to discuss holding Palestinian national elections, in Cairo on February 8, 2021 (WAFA)


CMEP's Bulletin is a weekly round-up of news from the Middle East and represents an array of perspectives on the issues we cover. CMEP does not necessarily agree with all the views expressed in the articles, and they do not speak on CMEP's behalf.

Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP)
110 Maryland Ave NE, Suite 311 | Washington, District of Columbia  20002
(202) 543-1222 |

Follow Us

Unsubscribe or Manage Your Preferences