Dossier: Mahmoud Abbas

Germany's foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier at the gathering of EU foreign ministers in Brussels on 22 July 2014 (photo: picture-alliance/dpa)

Germany's shared responsibility for the Gaza conflict and its end

Déjà vu in Gaza

For months, there has been an intense debate about whether Germany should assume greater foreign policy responsibility. Yet when it came to the conflict in Gaza, Germany's politicians have once again slipped into the role of the horrified bystander. By Muriel Asseburg und René WildangelMore

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas with his new government of national unity (Photo: Reuters)

Europe and the Gaza conflict

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"The Europeans must conduct a direct dialogue with Hamas"

In light of the inability of those involved in the Gaza conflict to make peace, Europe cannot just stand on the sidelines and watch. If it does, the conflict will come here. The ostracisation of Hamas has proved counter-productive. A commentary by Abdel Mottaleb El HusseiniMore

Catherine Ashton, EU High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, and Mahmoud Abbas, Palestinian Authority President (photo: picture alliance/dpa)

The EU and the Gaza conflict

"Effective diplomacy needs engagement with all sides"

While Europeans are focusing on Ukraine and Iraq, the oldest of the Middle East issues will haunt them for some time. The wider Israel–Palestinian conflict needs the full attention of Europe, writes Mattia ToaldoMore

Amos Oz (photo: picture-alliance/ZB)

Interview with Amos Oz

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"For Israel, it is a lose-lose situation"

Israel's ground offensive against Gaza is justified but excessive, says Amos Oz in this interview with Dennis Stute. However, the Israeli writer is also critical of the Hamas strategy of attacking Israel from within civilian areasMore

Ruins of a house in Gaza after a rocket attack on 13.07.2014. Photo: Reuters

Escalation in the Middle East

Provocation and violence

What set off the new spiral of violence in the Middle East? Does Palestinian organisation Hamas deserve the blame? Bettina Marx doubts that's the case and takes a look back at developments in recent weeksMore

Members of the Israeli army carrying out a raid in Hebron on 21 June 2014 (photo: Reuters/Mussa Qawasma)

The Israeli army in the West Bank

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The punishment of Palestinian citizens

Israel's heavy-handed acts of retaliation against both Hamas and Palestinian civilians are threatening to provoke a new escalation of violence. The Israeli military deployment in the West Bank is the biggest since the end of the second Intifada in 2005. A commentary by René WildangelMore

Hamas chief Ismail Hanija (right) and Fatah representative Azzam al-Ahmed in Gaza City on 23 April 2014 (photo: Reuters)

Reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah

No peace without Palestinian unity

The Palestinian organisations Hamas and Fatah plan to seal an alliance with each other – primarily out of necessity. Reconciliation is difficult; the danger of failure is great. It is for precisely this reason that the US and Europe should support the process. A commentary by René WildangelMore

The Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem (photo: dpa)

Essay by Tony Klug

Two States – by Design or Disaster

In his essay, Tony Klug warns that there might soon come a time when it will be too late to negotiate a peaceful two-state settlement through mutual agreement. But, he says, Israel and its people will ultimately have to pay a high price - unless Israel soon starts to support the inevitable two-state solutionMore

Uri Avnery (photo: Jack Guez/AFP/Getty Images)

Interview with the Israeli Peace Activist Uri Avnery

''Israel Needs Peace, Not Settlements''

Despite growing international criticism, Israel is pressing ahead with the construction of new settlements in and around Jerusalem. In this interview with Diana Hodali, peace activist Uri Avnery says that the current Israeli government does not actually want a two-state solution, regardless of what it saysMore

Daniel Barenboim (photo: dpa)

Commentary by Daniel Barenboim

Perhaps the Last Chance

In this commentary, pianist and star conductor Daniel Barenboim writes that the fact that Palestine was recently awarded non-member observer state status by the United Nations could be the last chance to breathe life into the two-state project in the Middle EastMore

Sari Nusseibeh (photo: Club Bertelsmann)

Interview with Sari Nusseibeh

A Virtual State Called Palestine

Sari Nusseibeh, Palestinian philosophy professor and President of the Al Quds University in East Jerusalem, talks to Inge Günther about the state of the peace process with IsraelMore

Demonstration against the Palestinian National Authority in Ramallah (photo: © René Wildangel)

Protests against the Palestinian Authority

''The People Want to Bring down Oslo''

Following a number of demonstrations in Ramallah, some of them brutally crushed by Palestinian police, the political future of occupied Palestinian territories is again thrown into question. By René WildangelMore

Mustafa Barghouti (photo: dpa)

Interview with Mustafa Barghouti

''This Society Does Not Want Extremism''

The Arab Spring is having an affect on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. According to Mustafa Barghouti, a politician and civil liberties campaigner from Ramallah, it is also having an affect on internal Palestinian relations. He talked to Kersten KnippMore

In Ramallah, Palestinians celebrate the unity deal between Hamas and Fatah on 6 February 2012 (photo: dpa)

Islamism and Politics in the Middle East

Is Hamas Reinventing Itself?

The signing of a new unity deal between Hamas and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas's secular Fatah party earlier this month has heightened an unprecedented struggle within Hamas over its future course as an Islamist movement. By Michael BröningMore

Mustafa Barghouti, presidential candidate, holds up his ballot paper as he votes in the Palestinian presidential election in 2005 (photo: picture alliance/dpa)

Interview with Mustafa Barghouti

Palestinians and the Path of Peaceful Resistance

Mustafa Barghouti is Secretary-General of the Palestinian National Initiative "Al Mubadara". He believes that the Middle East peace process has failed and that Palestinians must now choose the path of peaceful resistance. But what exactly does that entail? Muhannad Hamed spoke with Mustafa Barghouti in RamallahMore

Ilan Halevi (photo: Igal Avidan)

Interview with the Jewish Palestinian Politician Ilan Halevi

With One Foot in the UN

In this interview, Palestinian politician Ilan Halevi describes the hurdles that have to be overcome on the road to statehood and speaks of the rapprochement and the animosity between Fatah and Hamas. Igal Avidan spoke to him at a conference organised by the Heinrich Böll Foundation in BerlinMore

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