Questioning Palestinian Unity

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Now that Fatah and Hamas have agreed to form a Palestinian unity government, opinions are mixed on what this means for Israel, for the Palestinians and for the future of the peace process. Israel suspended peace negotiations a day after the April 23 announcement that the rival factions agreed to bridge their differences. It calls… Read More

Taking a Stand

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TEL AVIV — Israeli Finance Minister Yair Lapid said he supports freezing settlement growth to help jumpstart peace negotiations and vowed that his centrist Yesh Atid party would leave Israel’s governing coalition if Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu were responsible for the collapse of the peace process. In an interview this week, his first with an… Read More

Israeli Arab lawyer indicted for aiding Hamas

The Haifa District prosecution has indicted Mohammed Abed, a 42-year-old attorney from the village of Baana near the northern Israeli city of Acre, for a series of security offenses concerning his contacts with senior Hamas operatives. A gag order placed on the case was partially lifted Monday, revealing that Abed was arrested Feb. 24 in… Read More

China’s ancient Jewish community returning to its roots

China’s ancient Jewish community in Kaifeng is set to celebrate a traditional Passover Seder for what may be the first time in centuries. The Seder is being sponsored by Shavei Israel, an Israeli organization that helps “Lost Tribes” and other forgotten Jewish communities return to their roots. The Seder will be conducted by Tzuri Shi,… Read More

National Library of Israel acquires rare Montefiore Haggadah

The National Library of Israel has acquired a rare Passover Haggadah that once belonged to well-known philanthropist Moses Montefiore, Israel Hayom reported. The unique Haggadah is thought to have been printed in London in 1837 and is written in Hebrew with an English translation. The front of the book is adorned with the stylized Montefiore… Read More

‘New Reality’

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Even among those who anticipated it, the intensity of anti-Semitic violence that hit France in 2002 was shocking. That year — the height of the second Palestinian intifada — synagogues and schools were torched, previously rare anti-Semitic beatings occurred in Paris and elsewhere, and a new generation of Jews were introduced to dangers their grandparents… Read More

Amid protest, building of controversial statue begins

BUDAPEST, Hungary — Members of the Jewish community were among the demonstrators protesting the construction of a controversial monument to the Hungarian victims of the German occupation during World War II. Work on the statue began Tuesday in downtown Budapest, according to Klubradio, a news station known to be critical of the government. The protest… Read More

Alan Gross goes on hunger strike

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American-Jewish contractor Alan Gross has launched a hunger strike to protest his imprisonment in a Cuban jail and the lack of American assistance. “I began a fast on April 3 in protest of the treatment to which I am subjected by the governments of Cuba and the United States,” Gross said in a statement issued… Read More

French Jewish group fined for defamation

France’s largest Jewish organization defamed a pro-Palestinian charity by accusing it of financing Hamas, a French court ruled. The ruling against the CRIF umbrella group handed down by the Nancy Court of Cassation last month was first reported Sunday by the news site al-kanz.org. CRIF staff were ordered to pay the equivalent of $4,140 to… Read More

Is UNRWA an Obstacle to Peace?

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As the breakdown of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process grabs the latest headlines, a growing group of organizations are calling attention to what they believes to be a major obstacle in fostering understanding between Israelis and Palestinians: the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). David Bedein, bureau chief… Read More