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BTL:Israeli Massacre of 19 Civilians in Gaza Spurs Movement Toward a...

...New Palestinian Unity Government~Interview with Nadia Hijab, senior fellow at the Institute for Palestine Studies, conducted by Between the Lines' Melinda Tuhus
Israeli Massacre of 19 Civilians in Gaza([search]) Spurs Movement Toward a New Palestinian Unity Government

Interview with Nadia Hijab, senior fellow at the Institute for Palestine([search]) Studies, conducted by Melinda Tuhus

After unilaterally withdrawing from Gaza in September 2005, the Israeli Army re-invaded in June to search for a kidnapped Israeli soldier. Since then, about 400 Palestinians in Gaza have been killed, half of them civilians and at least 75 children. Despite the withdrawal, Palestinians say they have been under continuous Israeli siege. On Nov. 8, the Israelis mistakenly shelled a home and killed 19 Gazan civilians, including 7 children in the town of Beit Hanoun, triggering worldwide outrage. The U.S. recently vetoed a UN Security Council resolution condemning the attack, saying the measure was biased against Israel([search]).

Meanwhile, the Palestinian Authority government, led by the militant Islamic Hamas party -- elected in January in a ballot deemed free and fair -- has been totally isolated. Hamas has been spurned as a result of Israeli and western nations' demand that the party must recognize Israel's right to exist, renounce violence and honor previous agreements. Most international aid and financial transactions have been frozen, even from Arab states. But the suffering of the Palestinian people, along with continued attacks by Israel, has brought about dialogue between Hamas and Fatah, the party which formerly led the Palestinian government. On Nov. 13th a retired university president in the Gaza Strip emerged as the top candidate to head a new national unity government being formed to end the Palestinian Authority's isolation.

Between The Lines' Melinda Tuhus poke with Nadia Hijab, senior fellow at the Institute for Palestine Studies in Washington, D.C. She discusses the continuing violence in Gaza, the search for a negotiated solution to the conflict and an end to the Palestinian Authority's international isolation.

Call the Institute for Palestine Studies at (202) 342-3990 or visit the group's website at www.palestine-studies.org

Related links:

Middle East Report at www.merip.org

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