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Posts tagged ‘Fayyad’

A desperate throw of the dice

Thirty years ago, Israel minister Ariel Sharon told Knesset members that while they “shouted” about the settlements, “we lay another foot of pipe, another mile of road and build another house.” Successive Israeli governments have agreed with the country’s founding prime minister David Ben-Gurion’s own view that the “precondition for discussion with the Arabs” is to “establish a great Jewish fact in this country.” Now, however, the talk is of Palestinian “unilateralism.” This began with the appointed Palestinian Authority (PA) Prime Minister Salam Fayyad announcing his two-year plan for statehood in August, but has reached a crescendo in the last few weeks. Fayyad’s plan is still on the table, and although he has stressed that the emphasis is on institution-building, some reports have linked the initiative to a unilateral declaration of independence. Read more

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The making of Salam Fayyad

Palestinian Authority prime minister Salam Fayyad is the man of the moment, according to a lot of recent Middle East coverage in the western media. From The Economist and the LA Times, to The Huffington Post and Harper’s, the man reportedly referred to by Shimon Peres as a “Palestinian Ben-Gurion” is certainly getting a lot of column inches. Thomas Friedman has lauded what he calls “Fayyadism”, while Newsweek published an extensive report on the PM’s performance described by Tony Blair as “absolutely first class”. Read more

How did Palestine lose its prime minister?

As the Palestinian factions meet in Cairo for crucial reconciliation talks this week, analysts are still trying to decode the resignation of Salam Fayyad from his role as prime minister.

The standard assessment, such as that reported by the BBC on the Cairo unity talks, is that Fayyad’s resignation was “intended to pave the way for the formation of a national unity government”. Why would removing Fayyad help? Because, goes the theory, such a step is an appeasement of Hamas, who have always maintained that Fayyad – appointed rather than elected – was an “illegitimate” prime minister. Read more