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An Israeli group and U.S. Jewish group are banding together to promote a united Jerusalem.

The Coordinating Council on Jerusalem, founded last October by members of several U.S. Jewish groups as a response to renewed discussion of dividing Jerusalem in the lead-up to the Annapolis peace conference, has formed an alliance with the Israeli group One Jerusalem.

Chaired by former refusenik and Knesset member Natan Sharansky, One Jerusalem’s mission is to “maintain a united Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel.” Founded in 2001 and with some 80,000 members, One Jerusalem is best known for organizing mass rallies in Israel.

The Coordinating Council on Jerusalem was founded by groups including American Friends of Likud, the National Council of Young Israel, the Rabbinical Council of America, the Orthodox Union and the Zionist Organization of America.

“This alliance is an obvious and important step in world Jewry’s effort to keep a united Jerusalem,” said Jeff Ballabon, who is directing the Coordinating Council’s strategy. “One Jerusalem is the established leader on the issue and CCJ’s partnership with them unifies the two largest and most powerful Jewish communities in the world, Israel’s and America’s. We are proud to work together with Natan Sharansky and the visionaries of One Jerusalem.”

Former Israeli armed forces chief Moshe Levy died.

Levy, who served as Israel’s top general between 1983 and 1987, succumbed to a stroke Tuesday. He was 72.

Levy, whom David Ben-Gurion dubbed “Moshe and a half” for his height, took part in the fabled Mitla Pass operation as a paratrooper in 1956, going on to serve in several combat command roles. As chief of the Israel Defense Forces, he oversaw modernization projects in the years spanning the First Lebanon War and the first Palestinian Intifada.

“Levy was a great warrior who served the state for many years and bolstered the IDF,” Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said in a statement.

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