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  • Israeli-Palestinian tensions rise over order to close Orient House

    JERUSALEM, May 10 (JTA) — The Palestinians’ de facto headquarters in eastern Jerusalem has become the focal point of tensions that could lead to violence only days before Israel holds its elections. Israel on Monday served closure orders on three Palestinian offices operating out of Orient House after the two sides failed to reach a…

  • Netanyahu-Mordechai debate heralds Israeli election season

    JERUSALEM, April 14 (JTA) — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his Center Party challenger Yitzhak Mordechai faced off this week in the first televised debate between candidates for prime minister in Israel’s upcoming elections. However, the Israeli premier saved his sharpest barbs for Labor leader Ehud Barak, who had refused to participate, saying that such…

  • Kosovar refugees arrive in Israel on eve of Holocaust remembrance

    JERUSALEM, April 12 (JTA) — The poignant convergence of Holocaust Remembrance Day and the arrival of 112 ethnic Albanians from Kosovo was not lost on anyone. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was among the dignitaries who welcomed the flight of refugees on Monday, which was organized by the Jewish Agency for Israel. Israel agreed to grant…

  • Practice surgery’ by IDF doctors prompts outcry among Israeli public

    JERUSALEM, April 4 (JTA) — The disclosure that the Israeli army allows military doctors-in-training to practice emergency surgery techniques on the bodies of fallen soldiers has sparked a public outcry — and could lead to a criminal investigation into the practice. The practice came to light in a report published several weeks ago in a…

  • Issue of Palestinian statehood prompts threats, counter-threats

    JERUSALEM, March 21 (JTA) — The issue of Palestinian statehood is generating increasingly heated threats and counter-threats from both Israeli and Palestinian leaders. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned Sunday of severe and forceful consequences should Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat unilaterally declare an independent Palestinian state on May 4, the end of the interim period…

  • Conviction of Shas leader could spark ethnic tensions

    JERUSALEM, March 17 (JTA) — The conviction of a powerful Israeli political leader on charges of taking bribes, fraud and breach of public trust could raise ethnic tensions among Israelis in advance of the upcoming elections. A three-judge panel in Jerusalem’s District Court on Wednesday handed down its long-awaited verdict in the trial of Arye…

  • Barak comes out swinging after report clears his name

    JERUSALEM, March 15 (JTA) — Findings in a report about the Labor Party candidate for prime minister may deprive his political foes of at least one piece of ammunition against him. Ehud Barak came out swinging Monday, lashing out at his accusers after a state report cleared him of charges involving a 1992 army training…

  • Israel’s Cabinet firmly rejects E.U. stance regarding Jerusalem

    JERUSALEM, March 14 (JTA) — Israeli officials are up in arms regarding a statement from the current leadership of the European Union that questions Israel’s sovereignty over Jerusalem. During its weekly meeting Sunday, the Cabinet rejected what it said was a challenge by the European Union to Israeli control over all of Jerusalem. The E.U….

  • Lebanon calls on Israel to make unconditional withdrawal of army

    JERUSALEM, March 7 (JTA) — The Lebanese government is pressuring Israel to make an unconditional withdrawal from southern Lebanon. According to the Lebanese prime minister, Lebanon will not discuss any security arrangements or guarantees for an Israeli withdrawal from the Jewish state’s security zone in southern Lebanon. “Our position is firm and will not change,”…

  • Israelis seeking new course as death toll mounts in Lebanon

    JERUSALEM, Feb. 28 (JTA) — Some Israelis believe the army should withdraw unilaterally from southern Lebanon — others say the fighting there should be expanded to include raids on Beirut. But whatever their differences, most Israelis believe something has to be done to get Israel out of the Lebanese quagmire. According to a recent poll,…