Lily’s Room

December-12-2017 Israeli victory project & process

1. Israel Hayom (

Knesset, Congress sister lobbies to push new agenda on Middle East conflict

13 November 2017

Sister lobbies formed with the backing of the Israel Victory Project, an initiative of the conservative Middle East Forum think tank • Lawmakers urge U.S. to allow Israel to break from Washington's dictates to ensure it has the upper hand in the conflict.

Alongside U.S. President Donald Trump's ongoing efforts to put together a framework for an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal, the Knesset Lobby for Promoting the Recognition of Israeli Victory and the U.S. Congressional Israel Victory Lobby are set to start working together on what they see as a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in which Israel will emerge victorious.

In a meeting scheduled for Wednesday, members of both lobbies are expected to sign an unprecedented joint declaration that will call on the American government to allow the Israeli government to act according to its own judgement in securing an Israeli victory in the conflict, rather than obeying U.S. dictates, as well as making a demand that the Palestinians recognize Israel as the national state of the Jewish people.

Yisrael Beytenu MK Oded Forer, who heads the Knesset lobby, and MK Avraham Neguise (Likud), who serves as head of the Knesset Immigrant Absorption Committee, are scheduled to meet in the U.S. with White House officials, Democrats and Republicans in Congress, and heads of leading Jewish organizations to drum up support.

The Knesset lobby was founded last July and includes representatives from all the Zionist political factions. The Congressional lobby is headed by Reps. Ron DeSantis (R-Florida) and Bill Johnson (R-Ohio), and includes dozens of members.

The two lobbies have the support of the Middle East Forum, a conservative think tank headed by Professor Daniel Pipes, who founded the Israel Victory Project at the start of this year.

The IVP operates to change the narrative in Washington and in Jerusalem on solutions to the Israeli-Palestinian issue and institute policies supportive of an Israeli victory in the conflict.

2. Israel Hayom (

Why Palestinian Delusions Persist

by Daniel Pipes

13 November 2017

In 1974, Second Lt. Hiroo Onoda of the Imperial Japanese Army was still fighting for his emperor, hiding in a Philippine jungle. He had rejected many attempts to inform him of Japan's surrender 29 years earlier. During those long years, he senselessly murdered about one Filipino and injured three others per year. Only a concerted effort by his former commander finally convinced Onoda that the emperor had accepted defeat in 1945 and therefore he too must lay down arms.

The Palestinians of the West Bank and Gaza are Onoda writ large. 


3.David Horowitz Freedom Center (

The Israel Victory Project

by Daniel Pipes

19 November 2017

4. Gatestone Institute (

by Douglas Murray

11 December 2017

・President Trump's announcement on the status of Jerusalem last week was both historic and commendable. Historic because it is the first time that an American president has not just acknowledged that the Israeli capital is Jerusalem but decided to act on that acknowledgement. Commendable for breaking a deceitful trend and accepting what will remain the reality on the ground in every imaginable future scenario.

・Those who cannot accept that Jerusalem is the capital of the State of Israel tend to be exactly the same as those who cannot accept the State of Israel.

・Those who have most forcibly criticised him, on the other hand, have shown something weak, as well as ugly, about themselves: When the facts on the ground were staring them in the face, they chose instead to bow to domestic fantasies of their own creation.


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December-11-2017 Israeli and U.S. Ambassadors


U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley at U.N. Security Council meeting on Jerusalem:

"Thank you, Mr. President. The Jewish people are a patient people. Throughout three thousand years of civilization, foreign conquest, exile, and return, Jerusalem has remained their spiritual home. For nearly 70 years, the city of Jerusalem has been the capital of the State of Israel, despite many attempts by others to deny that reality.

The American people are less patient. In 1948, the United States was the first nation to recognize the independent state of Israel. In 1995, the U.S. Congress declared that Jerusalem should be recognized as the capital of Israel, and that the U.S. Embassy should be located in Jerusalem.

Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama all agreed with that position, but they did not act. They delayed, in the hopes that a peace process would produce results – results that never came.

For 22 years, the American people have overwhelmingly supported that position, and they have waited . . . and waited. This week, President Trump finally made the decision to no longer deny the will of the American people...

Israel, like all nations, has the right to determine its capital city. Jerusalem is the home of Israel’s parliament, president, prime minister, Supreme Court, and many of its ministries.

It is simple common sense that foreign embassies be located there. In virtually every country in the world, U.S. embassies are located in the host country’s capital city. Israel should be no different.

The United States took this step in full knowledge that it will raise questions and concerns. Our actions are intended to help advance the cause of peace. We must recognize that peace is advanced, not set back, when all parties are honest with each other. Our actions reflected an honest assessment of reality.

I understand the concern members have in calling this session. Change is hard. But we should never doubt what the truth can do. We should never doubt that when we face the truth, believe in the human spirit, and encourage each other, that peace can happen.

To those who have good faith concerns about the future of peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians, let me again assure you that the President and this administration remain committed to the peace process.

To those who do not act in good faith – to any person, leader, country, or terrorist group that uses this week’s decision as a pretext for violence – you are only showing yourselves to be unfit partners of peace.

Finally, I will not let this moment pass without a comment about the United Nations itself. Over many years, the United Nations has outrageously been of the world’s foremost centers of hostility towards Israel.

The U.N. has done much more to damage the prospects for Middle East peace than to advance them. We will not be a party to that. The United States no longer stands by when Israel is unfairly attacked in the United Nations. And the United States will not be lectured to by countries that lack any credibility when it comes to treating both Israelis and Palestinians fairly."

(Credit: UN Watch)


Trump’s Jerusalem Decision May Lead to Permanent Peace in Israel

by Danny Danon (Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations)

8 December 2017

The American president, Donald Trump, has made a bold decision.

By announcing that the United States will recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, he has not only proven himself as a reliable ally whose word can be counted on, but also a courageous leader who is not afraid to stand for what is right.

This decision is right for Israel, it is right for the United States, and it has a good chance of positively influencing the possibility for peace in our region.

"Jerusalem is an inseparable part of Israel and her eternal capital. No United Nations vote can alter that historic fact."

This quote was not said by one of our leaders in response to the shameful Security Council resolution 2334 last December. It was part of a statement by Israel's first prime minister, David Ben Gurion, on December 5, 1949 only days after the UN voted for a resolution calling for the internationalization of Jerusalem.

Ben Gurion's response was to move forward with a planned announcement about the moving of our Knesset (parliament) and other national institutions to Jerusalem.

The announcement by the Israeli government was met with condemnations from around the world. The US even went as far as to refuse to hold any diplomatic meetings in Jerusalem and they continued to send official cables to an office of our Foreign Ministry in Tel Aviv.

Nevertheless, Ben Gurion's brave decision was the right one for Israel. It made clear the idea of turning our historic capital into an international zone administered by others was a non-starter for Israel.

The decision also had long-term positive effects such as galvanizing Jews around the world with an allegiance to the holy city which had served as our capital since the days of King David.

Prime Minister Ben Gurion also put the countries of the region on notice that Israel would not shy away from making the right decisions – even in the face of international pressure.

Similarly, President Trump's decision carries immense significance for Israel and our region.

When Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed President Trump to Israel last May, he did so in what he called “Jerusalem, the eternal capital of the Jewish people, the united capital of the Jewish state.” By publicly affirming this vital understanding of our national being, President Trump has laid the groundwork for other countries to soon follow suit.

While some may doubt that other states will want to make such a move for fear of retribution from Arab countries, it is important to recall that many countries around the world take their cues from the US when it comes to certain aspects of their foreign policy.

This decision is also beneficial for the US interests. Israel is America's most stable and loyal ally in the Middle East. We stand by the US at the UN, and in every other forum, on almost every question of foreign policy.

Public opinion of the US by Israelis is consistently one of the highest in the world. More importantly, Israel is an island of stability in the one of the world's most tumultuous regions.

America knows that our democracy is strong, and our commitment to safety and security can be counted on and this in turn serves US interests in the Middle East.

Critics of US foreign policy have made the claim that over the past few years American allies have often been taken for granted while adversaries were rewarded. The nuclear agreement with Iran and past decisions to turn a blind eye to Assad's brutal regime in Syria are just two examples of America's opponents who have benefited from this policy.

Recognizing Jerusalem as our capital serves notice that the US respects its allies and supports them.

Finally, and probably most importantly, this decision may set in motion events that will make peace between Israelis and Palestinians more likely.

Israel exists in a tough neighborhood where strength is respected and perceived weakness can lead to disaster. Our two peace treaties were reached after Egypt and Jordan understood that Israel is here to stay and no amount of war or military might can defeat us.

Similarly, the Palestinians began considering diplomatic negotiations – in addition to their ongoing terror campaigns – only in the aftermath of the Gulf War when they lost the hope of forcing a settlement on Israel through the prism of Cold War politics.

The recognition of Jerusalem as our capital can serve as a healthy reality check for the Palestinians. As more and more countries begin to recognize our capital as fully under Israeli sovereignty, the reality will set in that neither terrorism nor Security Council resolutions will succeed in forcing our hand on a compromise in Jerusalem.

This understanding will remove the issue of Jerusalem from the other thorny final status disputes that have long vexed negotiations between us and the Palestinians. Freed from at least one part of their unrealistic expectations, this may encourage the Palestinians will finally turn to real direct negotiations.

There are times when leaders have to make the hard choice not only because there may be great geopolitical benefits from such a move, but because it is simply the right thing to do. This is what guided Prime Minister Ben Gurion when he moved the Knesset to Jerusalem almost seven decades ago.

President Trump has made a similar courageous decision today.


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December-09-2017 The Jerusalem Controversy

Middle East Forum (

Backgrounder: The Jerusalem Embassy Controversy

7 December 2017

・MEF backgrounders highlight select news-relevant research and analysis from Middle East Forum staff, fellows, and publications. Join the MEF mailing list to stay abreast of our work.

President Trump announced yesterday that the U.S. government recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and will begin preparations for establishing the American embassy there. The decision was swiftly and roundly condemned throughout the world as injurious to prospects for Israeli-Palestinian peace and detrimental to American interests.

However, research by Middle East Forum staff and fellows over the years shows that this two-pronged conventional wisdom is deeply flawed.


The 1947 UN partition resolution designated Jerusalem as an international city, a status that satisfied neither Jews nor Arabs. In the fighting that erupted following the invasion of Arab armies the next year, newly independent Israel occupied the western half of the city and established its capital there, while Jordan's Arab Legion took ownership of the eastern half, including the Old City and Temple Mount.

Israeli forces captured and annexed East Jerusalem in the 1967 Six-Day War. U.S.-brokered Israeli-Palestinian peace talks over the last 29 years have focused on the fate of East Jerusalem and other territories captured in that war. Current and past proposals to move the embassy have all involved relocation to West Jerusalem – territory to which Palestinian negotiators have not laid claim.

Thus, the intense anger expressed by Palestinian and Arab leaders toward the proposed relocation isn't rooted in concerns that Palestinian claims to disputed territory will be compromised. Indeed, it doesn't appear to be rooted in any concerns of ordinary Palestinians. According to a recent poll, just 12% of Palestinians in the West Bank and 25% in Gaza consider the location of the U.S. embassy a "very important" issue.

As Marshall J. Breger, a professor of law at the Catholic University of America, explained in a 1994 Middle East Quarterly article, Muslim religious and cultural attachments to Jerusalem are not very deep. Contrary to mainstream media depictions of the city as the "third holiest" in Islam, Jerusalem is not mentioned by name in the Qur'an, was never visited by the Prophet Muhammad, and was never the capital of any Arab-Islamic polity.

Delving further in a seminal 2001 Middle East Quarterly article, Middle East Forum President Daniel Pipes finds vast ebbs and flows in expressed Muslim views of Jerusalem's sacredness over the centuries, peaking when the city is occupied or threatened by non-Muslims. While there were few hadiths (accounts of the Prophet Muhammad's words and action) referencing Jerusalem prior to the Crusades, a rich flurry of them appeared when Muslim rulers needed a means of inspiring their subjects to wage jihad against the "Franks."

Once safely in Muslim hands, however, interest in Jerusalem dissipated so rapidly that Saladdin's grandson traded the city back to Europeans just 40 years later in exchange for military aid against a rival. Interest rose again until Jerusalem was regained in the thirteenth century, then declined for six-and-a-half centuries. It rose again during the British mandate period, when Hajj Amin al-Husseini, the infamous grand mufti of Jerusalem, needed a mechanism for inciting his followers to violence. Interest then declined (Al-Aqsa Mosque fell into disrepair, no Arab leader even bothered to visit East Jerusalem for nearly two decades) when the Jordanians ruled the Old City. Its falling into Israeli hands set in motion a new wave of Jerusalem-mania cultivated and instrumentalized by rejectionist Palestinian leaders and others (notably Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, as MEF writing fellow Burak Bekdil has discussed here and here). "The Muslim interest lies not so much in controlling Jerusalem as it does in denying control over the city to anyone else," Pipes concludes.

"Islam carries the expectation that a land once under Muslim control (Dar al-Islam) is an endowment (waqf) that must inevitably revert to Muslim rule," Pipes writes in a more recent treatment. In this respect, the distinction between western and eastern Jerusalem – and, more generally, between territories held by Israel in 1949 and new ones captured in 1967 – is immaterial.

This is why even "moderate" Palestinian leaders balk at officially recognizing the right to exist of a Jewish state, whatever its borders. At most, they are prepared to accept that a state by the name of Israel exists and extend generic diplomatic recognition to it, and only provided that the "right of return" to Israel for millions of Palestinians – which would mean the evisceration of Israel's Jewish majority if exercised – not be formally disavowed in a final status settlement, which is unacceptable to most Israelis.

U.S. Policy

For seven decades, the U.S. and other governments declined to recognize any part of Jerusalem as part of Israel, let alone its capital, instead locating their embassies over 40 miles away, in Tel Aviv. Initially reflecting hopes of resurrecting the 1947 internationalization proposal, it is now a convention entirely driven by fear that recognizing Israeli sovereignty anywhere in Jerusalem will alienate Palestinians and the broader Arab-Islamic world, damaging prospects for peace.

But the refusal of successive American presidents to fully recognize Israeli sovereignty even over territory within the 1949 armistice lines has undermined the peace process by encouraging unrealistic hopes among Palestinians that rejectionism will pay off. "The main impediment to Palestinian compromise is not Palestinian suspicion," explains MEF Director Gregg Roman, "it is the fundamental unwillingness of Palestinian leaders across the spectrum to accept the existence of a Jewish state alongside their own."

With the peace process at an impasse of their own making, Palestinian leaders have in recent years launched an aggressive campaign to delegitimize Israel in international fora, culminating in a burgeoning Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement in the West, a UNESCO resolution last year minimizing Jewish connections to the Temple Mount, and a UN Security Council resolution (2334) months later that effectively declared Israeli claims in disputed East Jerusalem null and void. Instead of pursuing a peaceful path to statehood, they have incited violence against Israel, while trying to persuade the rest of the world to recognize Palestinian statehood in the absence of peace.

Jerusalem is a central component of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas's incitement of anti-Israel violence.

The success of these endeavors partly reflects the growing dependence of European left-wing political parties on Muslim immigrant votes, according to MEF Shillman-Ginsburg Writing Fellow Michel Gurfinkiel. However, MEF Shillman-Ginsburg Writing Fellow Efraim Inbar argues that many in the West "simply do not want the Jews to have full control over the eternal city." Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who made an unprecedented visit to Jerusalem last July, and Russian President Vladimir Putin, whose foreign ministry officially recognized Israeli sovereignty over West Jerusalem in April, apparently felt no such taboo.

The Obama administration's turn against Israel gave an enormous boost to the delegitimation campaign. "Years of hostile U.S. actions under the Obama administration, from the Iran nuclear deal to UNSCR 2334, have emboldened Israel's enemies to believe that they can win the public relations war against the Jewish state," wrote Roman shortly after Trump's inauguration. "Together with Israel, the Trump administration must now convince them that they have lost."

Whether the Trump administration's decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital will achieve that remains to be seen, but it's a start.


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December-07-2017 Jerusalem is the capital city

The Algemeiner

5 December 2017

Why It’s Precisely the Right Time for Trump to Recognize Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel

by Dovid Efune(the editor-in-chief and CEO of The Algemeiner

Ahead of his expected recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital on Wednesday, US President Donald Trump has faced a virtual torrent of criticism.

He should pay the critics no heed. The move is not only morally the right thing to do, it’s also a political masterstroke. Let me explain.

Generally, the critics can be divided into two categories.

The first group — among them the Ramallah-headquartered Palestinian Authority and Gaza Strip-ruling terror organization Hamas (along with various Arab and Muslim states, and even the US State Department) — has made the case against recognition as being vital to prevent the inevitable violence and outrage that will follow as a result.

But Arab blackmail doesn’t feel like a compelling argument against implementing American law and doing what’s right — certainly for the United States. In addition, neither of these entities has much of a track record in furthering the cause of peace.

The second group, who are generally supportive of the move, have questioned the timing — ahead of the expected unveiling of a White House peace initiative in the coming weeks.

The timing, however, appears to be very well considered. It’s highly appropriate to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel at the outset of a peace push for the following reason:

When Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt, whom Trump has tasked with the Mideast peace brief, embarked on their “listening tour” soon after the president took office, they were advised by at least one regional actor that, in the words of Albert Einstein, one can’t keep doing the same thing and expect different results. In many ways, it seems that this word of advice — frankly, a matter of common sense — has served as a guiding principle in the nascent peace efforts.

From what we have seen so far, the peacemaking team has sought to implement new approaches on at least four fronts.

Firstly, there’s the “regional approach” concept, which was mentioned by both Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Trump in their first White House meeting. The practical manifestation of this alignment between Israel and the Sunni Arab states has yet to be clearly presented, but remains a constant subject of peace discussions.

Second is the commitment to push the parties to the table without imposing a predetermined outcome. “We’re trying to find a solution that comes from the region, not to impose,” Kushner told attendees at the Saban Forum over the weekend.

Third, there’s the focus on “bottom up” actions, seeking to build cooperation between the Palestinian and Israel people themselves by appealing to interests. This “economic peace” concept was behind the US-facilitated landmark water deal inked in July by Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, there is the administration’s willingness to apply pressure on the Palestinian Authority. Whereas some past presidents have handled PA leaders with kid gloves, Trump has taken a far more forthright approach, bringing up prickly issues like PA payments to terrorists without thinking twice.

This is vital because, as has been very well documented, the greatest obstacle to progress in the region has been Palestinian intransigence. The Israelis have shown — perhaps mistakenly — an incredible capacity to offer painful concessions for the cause of peace, including land transfers, prisoner releases and dangerous security arrangements, often at great political risk. Time and again, these gestures were rebuffed, and the Palestinians were excused as being the weaker, aggrieved, more delicate party.

The Palestinians first introduced the Trump administration to their duplicitous strategies when PA President Mahmoud Abbas told Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in June that they were ending the terror payments, only to recommit themselves to the sponsorship shortly afterwards.

But now we have a White House that favors results over process, and understands that presenting the Palestinians with real, permanent and painful costs for their rejectionism may provide the best opportunity for progress. Both carrots and sticks are necessary, and the White House appears to be preparing one hell of a stick.

There’s the ever present threat to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem; the threat to shut down the PA office in DC; the specter of White House support for the Taylor Force Act, which will see significant cuts to US financial aid to the Palestinians; Trump’s unwillingness to specify the two-state solution as the only solution to the conflict; and even the threat to withhold funds from international bodies that give the PA and the PLO full membership, which was circulated in the administration’s early days. In addition, the Palestinians will not be quick to forget that it was a matter of months before they were even able to establish contact with Trump’s team. They should not be taking that access for granted.

The Israelis have long been concerned — with due reason — that the Palestinians have never intended to pursue a genuine peace and that the peace process is seen as a tactic to secure more land from which to launch continued attacks on the Jewish state. Leaders of the PA have paid lip service to the peace initiatives over the years, but the statements in the PA’s founding and guiding documents, its glorification of terrorists, the curriculum taught in its schools and its constant incitement on social media, among other things, have all long-told another story.

Here we have an administration that for the first time seems prepared to call the Palestinians’ bluff. The recognition of Jerusalem at the onset of a peace initiative — and the lining up of further potential repercussions — shows the Palestinians and the international community just how serious the president is.

It’s a thoroughly worthwhile and commendable move.


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November-28-2017 DBP and the BM Bible (4)

For this article in Malay, please refer to my previous postings ( (Lily)

Free Malaysia Today (

DBP tak boleh terjemah Bible, kata sumber

oleh Mohamad Fadli

26 November 2017

KUALA LUMPUR: Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (DBP) tidak boleh menterjemah kitab Bible ke dalam bahasa Melayu seperti dicadangkan peguam Majlis Agama Islam Selangor (Mais), Mohamed Haniff Khatri Abdulla, kata sumber rapat dengan DBP.

Sumber itu berkata, DBP juga tidak boleh menterjemah mana-mana kitab, termasuk al-Quran.

Kita tidak boleh terjemah kitab Bible. Sudah lama dan boleh lihat di dalam laman web DBP mengenai tugas-tugas yang dibenarkan oleh DBP.

“DBP tidak perlu keluarkan kenyataan penafian ini sebenarnya sebab mereka boleh lihat sendiri di laman web DBP mengenai tugasan DBP,” katanya kepada FMT.

Laman web DBP menyatakan penubuhan DBP bertujuan mengembangkan bahasa Melayu sebagai bahasa kebangsaan dan bahasa rasmi negara.

Pada 1959, DBP dinaik taraf menjadi sebuah badan berkanun melalui Ordinan Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka 1959.

Susulan itu, DBP diberi kuasa autonomi untuk menggubal dasarnya yang khusus; menyusun program pembinaan dan pengembangan bahasa serta sastera; menjalankan kegiatan penerbitan dan perniagaan buku secara kompetitif menurut prinsip serta amalan perusahaan dan profesion penerbitan.

Pada 15 November lalu, Haniff membuat cadangan itu kepada mahkamah dalam pendengaran kes seorang Bumiputera Sarawak beragama Kristian yang merupakan penutur bahasa Melayu, Jill Ireland Lawrence Bill, terhadap menteri dalam negeri dan kerajaan untuk menegakkan hak perlembagaan beliau yang menurutnya dilanggar larangan penggunaan kalimah “Allah” dalam penerbitan Kristian.

Beliau mendakwa masyarakat Kristian di Sabah dan Sarawak tersalah menggunakan kalimah “Allah” untuk merujuk “God” dalam bahasa Melayu kerana mereka sepatutnya menggunakan “Tuhan” yang tidak akan mengurangkan hak mereka.

Sementara itu, FMT gagal menghubungi Ketua Pengarah DBP, Datuk Abdul Adzis Abas untuk mengulas cadangan Haniff supaya DBP menyediakan terjemahan Bible dalam bahasa Melayu.

Pegawai bahagian komunikasi DBP yang enggan dikenali berkata, sebarang kenyataan akan dimaklumkan kelak.

“Wartawan media lain pun hendak ketua pengarah ulas perkara sama, namun ketua pengarah seperti tidak bersedia membuat apa-apa kenyataan. Jika ada perkembangan baru akan saya maklum kemudian. Terima kasih,” katanya melalui WhatsApp.

Cadangan Haniff mencetuskan kemarahan pemimpin gereja dan politik beragama Kristian, termasuk sebuah badan pelbagai agama yang membidas kenyataan itu melampau.

Presiden Majlis Gereja Sabah, Biskop Melter Jiki Tais menuntut Haniff meminta maaf kerana menghina orang Kristian di Sabah.

Bagaimanapun, Haniff enggan meminta maaf atau menarik balik cadangannya meskipun dibidas pelbagai pihak.


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