Archives For Israel

Third time’s a charm — or not. 

After failing to form a government for the second time in a row, the Israeli Knesset, or parliament, was dissolved on Wednesday and another round of elections, the third in less than a 12-month period, has been scheduled for March.

Both Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and opposition leader of the Blue and White party Benny Gantz failed to recruit enough Knesset members in order to form a majority of more than 60 seats. 

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Bolivia’s new interim government announced a renewal of ties with Israel as part of an overall shift in its foreign policy.

Karen Longaric, foreign minister of Bolivia’s transitional government, announced the country’s new policy last week. The change was made possible after former Bolivian president Evo Morales stepped down last month. The socialist leader, who was generally antagonistic toward Israel, unilaterally broke off ties with the Jewish state in 2009 after Israel’s conflict with Gaza, Operation Cast Lead.

Morales canceled a 30-year agreement enabling Israelis to visit Bolivia without visas and, in 2014, called Israel a “terrorist state.” Longaric said that Morales’ decisions didn’t take into account the economic and commercial benefits Bolivia had derived from Israeli tourism to the South American nation.

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Nine Israeli inventions made it to TIME magazine’s list of 100 Best Inventions which means that Israeli inventions accounted for nearly 10 percent of the list — an amazing showing for such a small country!

The American-based magazine said it assembled its 2019 list by soliciting “nominations across a variety of categories from our editors and correspondents around the world, as well as through an online application process.” 

“Then TIME evaluated each contender based on key factors, including originality, creativity, influence, ambition and effectiveness.”

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Israel deported a human rights workers this week after a drawn out appeal process after the Ministry of Interior refused to renew his work visa in May 2018. 

With a long history of support for the BDS (Boycott Divestment Sanctions), Omar Shakir was hired by Human Right Watch to be the Israel and Palestine country director. He continued his anti-Israel activity after he took the job until the Ministry of Interior refused to renew his visa under a controversial 2017 law allowing the deportation of foreigners who support a boycott of Israel.

Shakir appealed his work visa refusal all the way to the Israeli Supreme Court, but the court sided with the Ministry of Interior and the deportation date was enforced on Monday.

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Following last week’s announcement by the United States that Israeli settlements do not violate international law, thousands of Palestinians in the West Bank protested on Tuesday as part of a “day of rage.”

In Ramallah, Bethlehem and Hebron, protesters threw stones at Israeli forces and, on Tuesday night, Palestinians from Gaza fired two rockets at southern Israel. One rocket was shot down by Iron Dome and the second landed in an open field.

The rockets triggered alert sirens in southern Israel sending residents running for shelters again. The attacks followed several days of relative calm.

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