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  • DNA test puts to rest mystery of one missing Yemenite child

    JERUSALEM, July 12 (JTA) — A painful chapter in the life of Menachem Sharabi’s family has been closed after a genetic test on the remains of a child’s grave confirmed the identity of his sister, Leah, who died some four decades ago. But for Sharabi, the news could not undo 40 years of hurt and…

  • Barak, Arafat attempt to narrow differences on final status talks

    JERUSALEM, July 11 (JTA) — A potential stumbling block to the Israeli-Palestinian peace process may have been removed by the leaders of the two sides. During a meeting Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat appeared to have narrowed their differences over whether Israel’s implementation of the Wye agreement be…

  • Barak pledges to be peacemaker as he takes prime minister’s oath

    JERUSALEM, July 6 (JTA) — Ehud Barak has been sworn in as Israel’s 10th prime minister, following a special Knesset session in which he pledged peacemaking as his government’s top priority. Following Barak’s address Tuesday and nearly five hours of speeches by other legislators, the new Israeli government and policy guidelines were approved by the…

  • Barak forges new government, will present partners next week

    JERUSALEM, June 30 (JTA) — Prime Minister-elect Ehud Barak has forged a coalition government that includes at least four parties in addition to his One Israel bloc. As required under law, Barak sent a letter Wednesday informing the acting speaker of the Knesset, former Prime Minister Shimon Peres, that he had formed his government, which…

  • Palestinian Authority must reform or it will lose support, report warns

    JERUSALEM, June 30 (JTA) — An independent, American-European report has taken Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat to task, advising him to govern more democratically and effectively or risk losing Palestinian public support. The report, “Strengthening Palestinian Public Institutions,” was presented to Arafat this week in the West Bank town of Ramallah, culminating a yearlong study…

  • Likud will likely stay in opposition, as Shas predicted to join coalition

    JERUSALEM, June 28 (JTA) — Prime Minister-elect Ehud Barak appears to be moving toward forming a moderate-left government. Though Barak had initially said he hoped to form a government that also includes the Likud Party, this became unlikely Monday, when coalition talks with Likud broke down. At the same time, there were signs that the…

  • Escalation by Israel, Hezbollah marks worst violence in 3 years

    JERUSALEM, June 27 (JTA) — The latest eruption of violence along Israel’s northern border has spawned varying assessments of what exactly sparked the escalation — and whether it will affect fledgling peace overtures between Israel and Syria. In a spiraling cycle of violence, nine Lebanese were killed when Israel bombed power stations and bridges near…

  • Palestinians vent anger at Israel in widespread protests; one dead

    JERUSALEM, June 3 (JTA) — Thousands of Palestinians have clashed with Israeli troops during demonstrations throughout the West Bank and Gaza Strip. The demonstrations reportedly took place in at least nine locations on Thursday, with Palestinians marching on settlements and Israeli army posts. In one incident near the West Bank town of Hebron, a Palestinian…

  • NEWS ANALYSIS Barak looks for common ground with potential coalition partners

    JERUSALEM, June 1 (JTA) — Prime Minister-elect Ehud Barak continued efforts this week to form a broad-based coalition from divergent political parties, but did not rule out the possibility of creating a narrow government if necessary. While his negotiating team worked at courting the Likud Party and, to a lesser degree, the fervently Orthodox Shas…

  • Sunken submarine will likely remain in its underwater tomb

    JERUSALEM, June 2 (JTA) — This week’s discovery of the sunken remains of the Dakar submarine, lost at sea three decades ago, brought some measure of closure to a long and painful mystery. The submarine, and its 69 crew members, disappeared without a trace during its maiden voyage in January 1969 from Britain to Israel….