Your weekly news round-up from CMEP ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌  ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌
Churches for Middle East Peace
Annexation threatens water and food

Annexation Will Threaten Region’s Water and Food Security, Report Says
A look at reports and updates on the proposed annexation, discussions around the US’s involvement and policy, and more news in this week’s bulletin.

Image: Palestinian farmers harvest onions in Jordan Valley in the West Bank, on February 10, 2020. (AP/Majdi Mohammed)

annexation threatens food and water

Annexation will threaten region’s water and food security, report says
Times of Israel

“Potential Israeli annexation of parts of the West Bank is likely to intensify the effects of climate change, threaten the region’s strategic water supplies, endanger the food security of the region’s Palestinians and halt essential cross-border environmental cooperation, a new report has warned. Issued Sunday by the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies, the paper said: ‘Unilateral approaches like annexation of parts of the West Bank and the Jordan Valley threaten to block any possible cooperative regional approach to solving the water, energy and food security issues which currently plague the region and will be exacerbated by the growing population and climate change.’” 

Image: Palestinian farmers harvest onions in Jordan Valley in the West Bank, on February 10, 2020. (AP/Majdi Mohammed)

Dem platform nixes condition on aid

US Democratic platform nixes conditioning aid to Israel over annexation
Times of Israel

“The Democratic Party’s platform drafting committee voted down a motion Monday (July 27) to include language in the 2020 document that would be more critical of Israel’s policy toward the Palestinians. By a vote of 117-34, the panel rejected an amendment that would mention the ‘Israeli occupation’ and call for the United States to condition aid to the country if Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu follows through on his plan to annex parts of the West Bank. The amendment — proposed by Clem Balanoff, the Illinois director of Our Revolution, a Bernie Sanders-inspired nonprofit — also would have included criticism of settlement activity, not just settlement ‘expansion’ as it currently does. It came after liberal Mideast advocacy groups, such as J Street, pushed for the final document to include mention of the word ‘occupation’ while they praised the draft for opposing annexation and declaring support for Palestinian rights.”

Image: Former vice president Joe Biden speaks during a Democratic presidential primary debate at CNN Studios in Washington, DC, March 15, 2020. (AP/Evan Vucci)

annexation stalls

Israel’s West Bank annexation stalls, for now, amid pandemic and political distractions
Washington Post

“After months of buildup, Israelis and Palestinians had come to think of July 1 as ‘annexation day,’ when Israel would proceed with its plan to formally absorb Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank into Israel proper. But more than two weeks later, with both Israel and its key backer, the Trump administration, preoccupied by spiking coronavirus infections, no plan has emerged, leaving some here to wonder whether annexation day will ever come. The two governments have not met publicly on the proposal since July 1, when the Trump administration’s special representative, Avi Berkowitz, flew back to Washington with no agreement on the scope or timing of annexation. President Trump’s Middle East plan envisions Israel annexing territory amounting to almost a third of the West Bank as well as the adjacent Jordan Valley. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has pledged not to proceed without approval from the White House.” 

Image: A mask-clad Jewish woman prays while Israeli settlers gather near the Palestinian town of Halhul to protest President Trump’s peace plan. (Menahem Kahana/AFP/Getty Images)

What's Happening at CMEP

Join #Churches

CMEP is continuing to push the US government towards justice through our Churches Against Annexation campaign. With all signs pointing towards formal annexation of Area C in the West Bank beginning this month, speak out against injustice today!

action alert

New P4P Blog Post:

Read the latest on our Prayers for Peace (P4P) blog. P4P provides a way for Christians of diverse political and theological backgrounds to stand up for peace and unite in supplication to God with a special focus on prayers for the Holy Land.


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House approves aid

US House approves $250m for Israeli-Palestinian dialogue, business development
Times of Israel

“The US House of Representatives on Friday (July 23) approved $250 million in funding for Israeli-Palestinian dialogue programs and Palestinian business development. The Alliance for Middle East Peace, an umbrella group for dialogue programs, led lobbying for the funding. The $50 million a year over five years breaks down over time to $110 million for the dialogue programs and $140 million for the investments. ‘We know the transformative power of people to people interactions and believe them to be a prerequisite for long-term peace,’ ALLMEP said on Twitter, praising particularly Nita Lowey of New York, the pro-Israel stalwart who is chairwoman of the Appropriations Committee and who championed the spending.”

Image: Illustrative: Israeli Jews and Palestinians talk to each other during a coexistence meeting in the West Bank, on July 22, 2015 (Nati Shohat/Flash90)

Danon Trump ties

Returning UN envoy: Israel won’t suffer for tight Trump ties
Washington Post

“Israel’s returning ambassador to the United Nations affirmed the country’s bond with the Trump administration Tuesday, dismissing notions that Israel would pay a price for its tight ties to the divisive president should he be defeated in November. In his first comprehensive interview since returning from the diplomatic posting, Danny Danon said he was relieved that the more progressive forces in the Democratic Party failed to secure the party’s nomination and claimed that Israel could prosper with either Trump or Joe Biden in the White House. When it comes to Israel, he says the country’s supporters in the U.S. put their domestic politics aside. ‘We have bipartisan support and we value and we cherish it,’ he said, at a temporary office near his home in central Israel. ‘I spoke publicly against Mr. Bernie Sanders. But he wasn’t elected. Mr. Biden is a friend of Israel and he proved it over the years. So, yes, we hear those voices, the radical voices, but they’re not the majority in the Democratic Party.’"

Image: Israel’s outgoing ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in the central Israeli city of Ra’anana, Tuesday, July 28, 2020. (Sebastian Scheiner/Associated Press)

not covid test site

Israel demolished Hebron car dealership, not 'COVID-19 center'
Jerusalem Post

Last week, we shared an article from the Middle East Eye on the reported demolition of a COVID-19 Testing Site in Hebron. Since the release of the article it has been determined that the demolished structure was not a COVID-19 Testing Site but instead a planned Car Dealership by a private Palestinian businessman. Please see the below article from The Jerusalem Post for more information. We apologize for the confusion. 

“An unlicensed structure demolished earlier this week by the Israeli authorities near Hebron was not being planned as a center for coronavirus tests, but as a private car dealership business. A Palestinian car dealer who was planning to open a business at the site, located at the entrance to Hebron, claimed after the demolition that the structure was intended to serve as a ‘center for conducting coronavirus tests’ on Palestinian workers upon their return from Israel. The structure was being built on a plot of land located in Area C, which is exclusively controlled by Israel. Civil Administration inspectors, who first noticed the structure on July 12, issued an order banning the continuation of the work. The car dealer, however, ignored the warning. Palestinians working at the site told the inspectors that they were building a car exhibition for a Palestinian businessman from Hebron. The inspectors also spotted a sign with the name of the new car dealership business. On July 21, Civil Administration bulldozers arrived at the site and demolished the illegally built structure. In an attempt to prevent the demolition, the car dealer informed the Hebron Municipality 10 days ago that he has decided to donate the illegally built structure to the municipality for ‘public services.’”

Image: IDF soldiers demolish the houses of the terrorists who killed 18-year-old Dvir Sorek. Nov. 28, 2019. (IDF Spokesman’s Unit)


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.

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