EU blocked "unbalanced" US move in last Quartet meeting

It was the European Union — and not just Russia, as earlier reported — that blocked a U.S. move in the last Quartet meeting (a dinner in Washington on 11 July) to back, and impose on Palestinians, a statement that would have endorsed two of Israel’s main recent demands (Palestinian acknowledgement of Israel as a […]

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Quartet Statement on "indirect" Israeli-Palestinian talks + East Jerusalem

Russia has wanted to host an international conference on Middle East Peace since the start of the Annapolis process of direct negotiations in late November 2007. It wasn’t exactly a full international multilateral conference, but today the Quartet of Middle East negotiators (US, Russia, European Union + UN) met in Moscow — with their Sp...

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New UNSC resolution on nuclear disarmament: "enjoyment of the benefits of the NPT by a State Party can be assured only by its compliance with the obligations thereunder"

U.S. President Barack Obama presided over the UN Security Council meeting today that adopted Resolution 1887, which notes, among other things, that “enjoyment of the benefits of the NPT by a State Party can be assured only by its compliance with the obligations thereunder”. That is a nice, consensus phrase — and one directed speci...

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Experts call collision of orbiting US and Russian satellites "catastropic"

What more is there to say than this? Apparently, there is only “little risk” to the international space station — not no risk, just a little one. Remember the fuss about space debris when China deliberately shot down one of its “weather” satellites (apparently to try to focus attention on China’s belief that it i...

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UN Human Rights Council in Geneva calls for investigation in Gaza

The UN Human Rights Council in Geneva strongly condemned ongoing Israeli military operations in Gaza, on Monday, and also condemned Israel’s “grave violations” of the human rights of the people of Gaza, in an emergency session that began last Friday. The resolution also called for the urgent dispatch of an international mission to...

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Rice: "We have a breakthrough document on missile defense for the Alliance"

In Bucharest today, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice and U.S. National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley indicated they were very pleased by the support they feel the U.S. has gotten from the NATO alliance for its missile defense proposals in Europe. Rice told journalists: “…we have a breakthrough document on missile defense for th...

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Russia chairs UN Security Council in March

Russian Federation Ambassador Vitaly Churkin of the Russian Federation will assume the Council’s rotating presidency for the month of March, the UN Spokesperson told journalists on Friday. This is interesting. A vote that the U.S., Britain and France wanted to have either on Friday or on Saturday (in other words, before the Russian presidency in [&...

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Is Russia upping the ante on Kosovo? Is the EU? NATO? The UN?

The Associated Press is reporting just now that ” Serbia’s minister for Kosovo, Slobodan Samardzic, crossed the border Monday to visit Serb communities in Kosovo. The top UN official in Kosovo, Joachim Ruecker, said he allowed Samardzic into Kosovo on the condition that he issue a public statement ‘making it very, very clear that ...

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