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CMEP Weekly Bulletin: US: Israelis, Palestinians Must Take Steps to Halt Rising West Bank Violence

A look at growing unrest, elections, and more news in this week’s bulletin.

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.

Image: US State Department spokesperson Ned Price speaks during a news conference in Washington, US, March 10, 2022. (Manuel Balce Ceneta/Pool via Reuters)

US: Israelis, Palestinians must take steps to halt rising West Bank violence

Jerusalem Post

“The United States called on Israelis and Palestinians to halt escalating West Bank violence after four Palestinians were killed in a gun battle with the IDF. ‘We are deeply concerned by the deteriorating security situation in the West Bank,’ US State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters in Washington. ‘We call on the parties themselves to contain the violence. The United States and other international partners stand ready to help but we cannot substitute for vital actions by the parties to mitigate conflict and to restore calm,’ Price said.”


Image: Passengers arrive on the Jordanian side of the Allenby Bridge crossing between the West Bank and Jordan on July 19, 2022. (Khalil MAZRAAWI / AFP)

US envoy says Allenby crossing from West Bank to Jordan to open 24/7
Times of Israel

“The Allenby Bridge border crossing between the West Bank and Jordan will begin a pilot in which it will operate 24 hours a day, every day of the week, US Ambassador to Israel Tom Nides announced Wednesday (September 28). All-hours access to the crossing, which is operated by the Israel Airports Authority on the West Bank end of the bridge, was declared as a goal by US President Joe Biden when he visited the country in July. At the time, the US set a deadline for September 30 but Israeli media reports since said it would not be met due to a lack of resources. Nides announced the development in a tweet and thanked the Prime Minister’s Office, the Transportation Ministry, the airports authority and the government’s Israeli liaison office with the Palestinian territories, known as COGAT.”


Image:  House committee approves bill to disperse the Knesset, December 26th, 2018. (Marc Israel Sellem)

Israel Elections: Gantz gains at Netanyahu's expense in latest poll

Jerusalem Post

“If the election were held today, neither bloc would be able to form a coalition, according to a Channel 12 poll on Wednesday (September 28). The right-wing bloc earns 59 seats, with the center-left earning 57 seats. the other 4 seats go to Hadash-Ta'al, who as of this moment, does not belong to either bloc. If this poll is accurate, the only chance for the center-left to form a government would be with Hadash-Ta'al, a move some in Yesh Atid already rejected. For the right bloc, the path to a coalition would have to go through cooperation with a party from the other bloc.”

What's Happening at CMEP

Three Online Events this Fall: American Complicity in the Israeli Occupation: A Series of Educational Events, organized in collaboration with American Friends of Combatants for Peace.  Join us on October 3rd, October 18th, and November 2nd for three different webinars focusing on American complicity in the Israeli Occupation.  We'll hear from several different experts on topics such as how American religious and political institutions sustain the occupation and how the upcoming US midterm elections will influence the future of Israel, Palestine, and the Occupation.

Virtual Town Hall: CMEP and the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles invite all who are interested to attend this virtual town hall on October 8th at 10 am Pacific / 1 pm Eastern. This virtual roundtable panel is taking place in preparation for Archbishop Hosam’s visit to Los Angeles and aims to introduce leaders in the Diocese of Los Angeles to key issues that deter peace and justice in Jerusalem and Israel/Palestine. The panel includes speakers from Israel, Palestine, and the U.S. who hold expertise related to: contemporary geopolitics in Israel/Palestine, land annexation, the Palestinian Christian community, and U.S. advocacy related to the Middle East and moderated by CMEP's Senior Director of Advocacy and Government Relations, Kyle Cristofalo.

Lead a small group with CMEP’s curriculum!

Does the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict seem overwhelmingly complex at times? Our curriculum offers all the basics to becoming informed advocates for peace and justice. Get weekly readings, video presentations, and discussion guides.


Support the work of CMEP:

Join us this month as we remember the legacy of our former Executive Director, Ambassador Warren Clark, by raising funds for our Fellowship in his name. The Ambassador Warren Clark Fellowship equips young Christian academics with the opportunity to research the ongoing conflict in the Middle East. Consider making a contribution to this vital program today! 


Image: Fire burning in Mesilat Zion forest, near Jerusalem, on Wednesday, September 28, 2022. (Ohad Zwigenberg)

Hikers evacuated as firefighters battle blaze in Galilee, gain control of fire in Jerusalem Hills

“More than 40 firefighting crews battled on Wednesday (September 28) to put out a forest fire that started in the Galilee panhandle in the afternoon. Eight planes joined the firefighting crews, who were still trying to contain the blaze on Ramim Ridge, near Kibbutz Manara, Wednesday evening. A fire also broke out in the Jerusalem Hills Wednesday afternoon between Latrun and Sha’ar Hagay, near the town of Mesilat Zion. That blaze was fought by 34 firefighting crews, eight planes and a helicopter. By evening, it was under control.”


Image: Firefighters work among the ruins of a house, which is said was hit by Azeri shelling during recent border clashes with Azerbaijan, in the settlement of Sotk, Armenia, on September 14, 2022. (Karen Minasyan/ AFP)

Upholding the ceasefire between Azerbaijan and Armenia
Crisis Group

“In the early hours of 13 September, fighting broke out along the border between Armenia and Azerbaijan, killing at least 207 Armenian and 80 Azerbaijani soldiers. This escalation was the deadliest between the two countries since their six-week war in 2020. It erupted at several spots along Armenia’s eastern border with Azerbaijan, spilling into key towns inside Armenia. The ensuing roughly 48 hours of hostilities covered a much larger swathe of territory than in previous years, when fighting was confined to areas in or around the Nagorno-Karabakh enclave. That enclave has been at the heart of the conflict between the two sides since the countries gained independence from the crumbling Soviet Union. Azerbaijani forces drove deep into Armenia, with artillery, mortar and drone attacks along a 200km stretch of border.”


Image: Iraqi forces and Kurdish Peshmerga fighters gather during an intensive security deployment after Islamic State militants took it over the previous day in Luhaiban village in Kirkuk, Iraq, December 6, 2021. (Reuters/Ako Rasheed)

US reaffirms commitment to assist Iraq and Kurdistan in fight against ISIS

“United States Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs Celeste Wallander met with top Iraqi officials last week to underscore America's commitment to its alliance with the country and to defeating the Islamic State terrorist organization, the Department of Defense confirmed on Tuesday (September 27). Wallander also signed a memorandum of understanding with the minister of peshmerga affairs in the Kurdistan region, describing the parameters by which the US will continue supporting Kurdish fighters against ISIS.”

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)
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