The Obama administration commended the progress of Palestinian security services.
In a statement last Sunday, the U.S. State Department said:
“The program has witnessed increased coordination of activities amongst international donors, and is achieving notable progress on security, justice, corrections, and other new frontsâ€¦”
The statement marked a visit to the Middle East, last week by William Brownfield, assistant secretary of state, responsible for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, the American department running the training program for Palestinian Authority police.
Obama has been urging Israel to cede more authority to the Palestinian security services, in that it would boost Palestinian confidence, pushing the peace process into progress.
Meanwhile, Israel is pressing the United States as well as certain governments in Europe to pressure Mahmoud Abbas not to establish a unity government with Hamas, who is centered in the Gaza Strip.
Abbas is calling for new Palestinian elections within six months, though he says they cannot be held unless residents in the Gaza Strip participate. Hamas declines to hold elections in Gaza unless there is a reconciliation deal.
Meanwhile, on earth, Israel thwarted an attempt by Gazans to launch an anti-tank missile at an IDF force in northern Gaza. Also on Tuesday, a Kassam was fired from Gaza into southern Israel. Last week Israel suffered the worst rain of mortars fired from the strip in two years â€“ upwards of fifty mortar shells landed.
The IDF responded with an attack causing three or four unfortunate casualties and successfully hitting all targets. Two terror tunnels, two weapons manufacturing and storage facilities, and two additional sites.
All this, though, before a bomb in a bag exploded next to a bus in Jerusalem, causing 39 injured Israelis and one 60 year old woman, killed.
The Jerusalem Marathon, set to take place Friday at the site of the terror incident will happen as scheduled.