Maltese president’s visit to occupied territories focus of dailies

RAMALLAH, The visit of Malta’s President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca to the occupied Palestinian territories and meeting with President Mahmoud Abbas hit the front page headlines in Palestinian Arabic dailies on Friday.

Abbas was reported in the three dailies stating: What encourages Israel to act as a state that is above the law is the US administration’s support ]and its blind bias to the Israeli occupation[.

He was also reported in al-Ayyam saying that democracy is the way to restore the unity of the Palestinian territories and people.

Coleiro Preca was reported in al-Hayat al-Jadida stating that the active support of Malta and the European Union (EU) had to continue to provide hope that an independent and democratic State of Palestine would one day exist alongside the State of Israel in the context of the two-state solution.

Moreover, al-Hayat al-Jadida said that Abbas met with an Israeli economic delegation from the Breaking the Israeli-Palestinian Deadlock Foundation.

Additionally, the dailies reported that Israeli occupation authorities extended the closure of six Palestinian institutions in East Jerusalem for six months.

Chief among the closed institutions is the Orient House, which served as the Palestine Liberation Organization’s (PLO) headquarters until 1990s.

The other institutions are the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society, the East Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce, the Supreme Council for the Arab Tourism Industry, the Center for Palestinian Studies and the Office for Social and Statistical Studies.

Moreover, the dailies reported that Israeli forces brutally attacked the Abu Rajab family at their house in the Old City of Hebron.

They added that three Palestinians were injured from Israeli live ammunition and dozens others suffered from tear gas inhalation during an Israeli military raid into Tuqu town, south of Bethlehem.

According to al-Quds, Israeli forces detained a number of Palestinians during multiple overnight raids across the West Bank.

Al-Quds and al-Hayat al-Jadida added that Shadi Mattur, Secretary-General of Fatah for Jerusalem District, was detained by Israeli forces as he was heading from Jordan to the West Bank at al-Karameh border crossing.

Furthermore, al-Quds and al-Ayyam said that an Egyptian security delegation has arrived in the besieged Gaza Strip for talks with officials of Hamas and other Palestinian factions.

Secretary General of the PLO’s Executive Committee Saeb Erekat was reported in al-Quds stating that US aid to the Palestinian security services would come to an end as of Friday, February 1, 2019, ]at the request of the Palestinian leadership[.

Al-Quds reported Director General of the Health Ministry’s Public Health Department Yasser Bouzieh saying that a total of 450 cases of swine flue (N1) were recorded among Palestinians in the West Bank during the last few months.

Regionally, al-Quds and al-Ayyam said that US President Donald Trump’s advisor Jared Kushner and US envoy Jason Greenblatt will discuss Trump’s Mideast plan, dubbed deal of the century, with Israeli Premier Benjamin Netanyahu in Warsaw.

Al-Quds and al-Hayat al-Jadida said that Lebanon announced the formation of a new government headed by Premier Saad Hariri.

According to al-Ayyam, the foreign ministers of six Arab countries met in Jordan and discussed regional challenges.

Al-Quds highlighted Palestinian-American congresswoman Rashida Tlaib’s plan to organize a congressional delegation to the occupied West Bank as an alternative to the decades-long trips to Israel for freshman lawmakers organized by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).

It explained that pro-Israel lobby seeks to foil her planned congressional delegation trip to the West Bank.

Al-Ayyam said that the Higher National Commission for the Great March of Return has urged Gaza protestors to maintain nonviolent protests to reduce human and material toll to zero.

Finally, al-Hayat al-Jadida printed a report detailing that Palestine has chaired several intensive meetings of the Group 77 and China since the beginning of 2019.

Source: Palestinian News and Info Agency