Israel news summary

Israel News for 4-29-2022

News Update

On this final Friday of Ramadan, hundreds of Palestinians rioted on the Temple Mount, waving Hamas flags and throwing rocks and fireworks. Some threw rocks down at Jews worshipping at the Western Wall. Police entered the Temple Mount to stop the rioting. At least 12 rioters were reported injured and several arrested. The violence ended around an hour later, after other Palestinians in the compound intervened, convincing the stone throwers and the police to pull back. Today is one of the busiest days at the Al Aqsa mosque on the Temple Mount. The police presence in and around the Old City has been significantly increased.

Security forces arrested Nazir Nassar, a senior Palestinian Islamic Jihad operative, in a raid in the West Bank early this morning.

The IDF will deploy six battalions of reservist forces at the West Bank security barrier to prevent terrorist attacks and illegal crossings.

The Supreme Court yesterday rejected an appeal against the establishment of a new Jewish neighborhood in Hebron’s old city. Called the Hezekiah Quarter, the new neighborhood is expected to include 31 residential units, including a six-story apartment building. Construction began last year. To read more, click here.

Ra’am, the Arab party that has been part of PM Bennett’s coalition, has agreed to end its boycott and vote with the government when the Knesset returns to session on May 9th. Ra’am had refused to vote with the government earlier this month as pressure mounted on it over the ongoing tensions and violence between police and Palestinians at Jerusalem’s Temple Mount. After Ra’am returns to the government, the coalition will accelerate several moves important to the party, including the immediate recognition of illegal Bedouin villages in southern Israel. Ra’am draws much of its voter support from Bedouin in the Negev region.

In his address at Yad Vashem (the holocaust museum in Jerusalem) at the start of Holocaust Remembrance Day yesterday, PM Bennett called on the world to stop comparing the Holocaust to other events in history. He also warned Jews against letting internal divisions tear society apart.

With the Ministry of Interior’s Immigration and Population Authority struggling to keep up with demand for renewing passports, the order allowing dual citizens to travel abroad on foreign passports has been extended until January 1, 2023.

The shekel is at its weakest against the dollar since early April 2021.

Believe it or not, the estate of Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky, the great Torah sage who passed away recently, is in dispute. To read about this, click here.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 4-27-2022

News Update

The Syrian Defense Ministry said that at four soldiers were killed and three others wounded in an Israeli missile attack on Damascus late last night. The Saudi Arabian Al Hadath news channel reported that the target of the attack was a shipment of weapons for the Iran backed Hezbollah terror group. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said several missiles struck areas near Damascus International Airport on the southern edge of the capital as well as several suburbs. It said the areas hit host Syrian military positions as well as some of Iran-backed fighters. The attack came a day after an Israeli drone crashed on the Syrian side of the border.

An armed terrorist affiliated with Islamic Jihad was killed during a raid by security forces in Jenin. The security forces came under attack during the raid, in which they arrested 12 terror suspects.

The Israel Police and the Shin Bet are investigating a threatening letter, that came along with a live bullet, sent to a member of PM Bennett’s family who resides in the family home in Ra’anana. To read more, click here.

Israel took part in the international defense conference held in Germany yesterday to discuss the arming of Ukraine and the war. Over 40 NATO member countries attended.

The US National Security Advisor met with his Israel counterpart in Washington earlier this week.

IDF and Police forces thwarted a large weapons smuggling attempt from Lebanon on Monday night and confiscated 100 grenades and some rifle. Police are investigated whether Hezbollah was involved in the smuggling attempt, as they have been in the past.

Tonight and tomorrow is Holocaust Remembrance Day in Israel, when we remember the millions of Jews murdered in the Holocaust and honor those who managed to survive. There are currently over 160,000 holocaust survivors living in Israel.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 4-25-2022

News Update

A rocket fired from southern Lebanon landed in an open area in the western Galilee last night. IDF Spokesperson Ran Kochav said that no group has claimed responsibility for the rocket launch but estimated that a Palestinian faction operating in southern Lebanon was behind the fire that was a show of solidarity with the protests at the Al Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem. He also said that there are hundreds of Hamas operatives in southern Lebanon. The IDF responded to the rocket with artillery fire towards the location of the launch early today.

On Friday, 2 rockets were fired into southern Israel from Gaza. One of them landed in a field in Israel but the other fell short and landed and exploded in Gaza, near a UN operated school. On Wednesday, terrorists launched a rocket that crashed in the southern city of Sderot, causing damage to a residential home and several cars. In response, the IDF struck that night what it called “an underground complex in Gaza used to produce rocket engines” which will “significantly impede rocket manufacturing capabilities in Gaza”. Several Hamas air defense positions were also destroyed in an attack. Israel has closed off the border crossing with Gaza. Defense Minister Benny Gantz said that “Israel will continue to show civil and economic generosity, only if stability and security are maintained.”

The Supreme Court yesterday rejected a request to reopen an investigation into the deaths of four Palestinian children who were killed by an Israeli airstrike while playing on the beach in Gaza during the 2014 war. The court upheld earlier decisions by Israeli military investigators and legal authorities determining that the incident was a tragic mistake.

Security forces arrested 12 terror suspects in several West Bank locations in operations over the weekend.

The Israeli shekel is weakening against the US dollar, at least temporarily. To read why, click here.

Small investors who cannot afford to buy residential property in Israel for investment are finding more affordable alternatives in the commercial market. To read more, click here.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 4-13-2022

News Update

Palestinians attacked an IDF escorted group who came to Josef’s Tomb to repair the damage cause by Palestinian vandals earlier this week. One attacker was killed and 17 wounded in the ensuing clashes.

A terrorist stabbed a police officer in Ashkelon yesterday, after the officer stopped to check him because he was behaving suspiciously at a construction site. The officer responded quickly and shot and killed the terrorist. The officer suffered light wounds.

Security forces are still hunting for the father of the terrorist who killed 3 and wounded a dozen others in Tel Aviv last week. The father, who was a high-ranking officer in the Palestinian Authority security services, began a campaign of incitement shortly after his terrorist son was killed by Israeli forces. He and his other son, both of whom are suspected of helping provide the terror weapon, are being hidden by terrorists in the Jenin refugee camp.

The IDF announced yesterday that it has deployed additional forces, including infantry and combat engineers, to the West Bank security barrier. This comes after the Security Cabinet approved a NIS 360 million plan to reinforce and repair the barrier.

According to the Defense Ministry, Israel’s annual arms sales reaches new record of $11.3 billion in 2021. Defense exports rose from $8.3 billion in 2020 to $11.3 billion in 2021. The largest buyer of Israeli defense goods was Europe, purchasing 41 percent of total exports. The Asia-Pacific region purchased 34 percent, followed by North America with 12 percent. Countries under the Abraham Accords, such as the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, accounted for 7 percent of the defense goods. Finally, Africa and Latin America each purchased 3 percent.

Prostitution in Israel is on the decline. To read more, click here.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 4-11-2022

News Update
IDF and police elite special forces units have been conducting anti-terror operations in Palestinian areas in Samaria. Forces arrested 20 suspected terrorists in Tulkarm and Jenin, some after firefights. Forces attempting to arrest the brother of the terrorist who attacked the Tel aviv pub on Thursday night, shot and wounded him, but he managed to escape.

A female terrorist stabbed a Border Police officer at a checkpoint near the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron yesterday. The officer was lightly wounded and managed to draw his pistol and shoot and kill the terrorist.

On Saturday night, about a hundred Palestinians vandalized Joseph’s Tomb near Shechem (Nablus). The Jewish holy site is supposed to be protected by the Palestinian Authority, which controls the area. Substantial damage to the site was caused. Defense Minister Gantz sent a strong message to the Palestinian Authority to increase security of the site and punish the perpetrators. He also promised that Israel would quickly renovate the site and to implement measures to prevent further incidents of vandalism. A delegation of Knesset members will visit the site tonight. Two Hasidic Jews were shot and wounded when they attempted to make their way to the site last night.

The three victims of Thursday nights terror attack in Tel Aviv were laid to rest yesterday. Tomer Morad and Eytam Magini, both 27 and childhood friends, were laid to rest in the Kvar Saba cemetery. Hundreds of mourners attended the funerals. Barak Lufan, a 35-year-old father of three, was laid to rest in Kibbutz Ginosar in northern Israel, where he was born and raised. Lufan was once considered one of Israel’s leading kayakers. He served as a coach for Israel’s Olympic and Paralympic kayaking teams.

The chairman of the predominantly Arab Joint List party, MK Ayman Odeh, caused an uproar on Sunday as he called on Israeli Arabs who serve in the security forces to revolt and leave the service. “Throw the weapons in their faces. The forces who are here are humiliating our people, our families and everyone who comes to pray at the Al-Aqsa Mosque,” Odeh said in a video posted to his Facebook page, according to Channel 12 News. To read more, click here.

Yesterday, a man in his 20’s snatched a rifle from a female soldier at a bus stop in Ashkelon. He was seen by Col. Eliav Elbaz, the commander of the IDF’s Binyamin Territorial Brigade, who happened to pass by the scene of the attack. The Colonel ordered the man to stop and, when he refused, shot and killed him. A large force of police and military personnel gather at the sight on the assumption that the incident was a terror attack. But then the attacker was identified as a mentally ill Jewish man who escaped from a nearby facility.

Despite criticism from the Ministry of Finance and Israel’s planning bodies, the government approved seven new settlements for the Negev today. The proposal came from Minister of the Interior Ayelet Shaked and Minister of Housing and Construction Ze’ev Elkin. The plan covers Ir Avot, a new urban settlement north of Lehavim that will have 15,000 housing units for a population of about 80,000; five additional new settlements with 10,000 housing units; and an industrial zone along the Beersheva-Dimona route (Road 25).

Israel news summary

Israel News for 4-8-2022

News Update

Terror in Tel Aviv: Last night, a 28 year old terrorist from Jenin opened fire, with a handgun, on people in a popular pub on Dizengoff Street in the heart of Tel Aviv. Two men in their 20’s were killed and 14 other people wounded. The terrorist then escaped. Over a thousand police, Shin Bet and IDF personnel and special force members launched a massive house to house manhunt for the terrorist. Tel Aviv residents were ordered to stay at home and public transport in the area was halted.

Early this morning, the Shin Bet located the terrorist near a mosque in Jaffa. A special anti-terror force approached the hideout and ordered the terrorist to surrender, but he opened fire and was killed in the ensuing shootout. Non of the security force were injured. The terrorist was in Israel illegally, after being denied a permit because of his affiliation with the al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades. His father, a key figure in Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah movement in Jenin and a former officer in the Palestinian security forces, praised his son’s actions in a video that circulated online. Thousands of Palestinians from the Jenin area marched to the terrorist’s family home to express their support. The terrorist’s father addressed the crowd saying, “Victory will come soon. In the coming days you will see the change. You will be free and independent. God, free Al-Aqsa mosque from the hands of the occupation.”

PM Bennett, in a televised address alongside Defense Minister Benny Gantz and Public Security Minister Omer Barlev., said that, “we grant full freedom of action to the IDF, the Shin Bet and all security forces in order to eradicate terrorism. There are and won’t be any restrictions to this war.”

The two men killed were Tomer Morad and Eitam Magini, childhood friends, both 27-year-old students at Tel Aviv University from Kfar Saba. Eitem got engaged last month. They will be laid to rest on Sunday afternoon in Kfar Saba. One of the 14 wounded victims is in critical condition.

US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken tweeted, “We strongly condemn the terrorist attack that occurred in Israel today. We are thinking of the victims of today’s attack and the families of those killed. May the memories of those who passed be a blessing.” Other foreign diplomats also strongly condemned the attack.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 4-6-2022

News Update

MK Idit Silman, of the right-wing Yamina party, has left the coalition government of PM Naftali Bennett, leaving the government without a majority in the Knesset. That means the government will not be able to pass any legislation without the votes of members of the opposition. Silman was promised the position of Health Minister in the future Likud government and a safe seat on the Likud list.

PM Bennett called his fellow Yamina party members to a meeting in Tel Aviv today. Likud, the main opposition party led by former PM Netanyahu, could potentially move to dissolve the government and call for new elections, but they also do not have enough votes to form a coalition. Part of Silman’s decision to leave the coalition was due to the government compliance with the ruling of the High Court of Justice allowing visitors to bring hametz (leavened bread) into hospitals on the Passover holiday

Israel’s security agencies are differing on whether or not to return the bodies of killed terrorists to their families. Apparently, the Israeli Police advised Gantz not to release the bodies. The IDF and Shin Bet, however, believe the best decision is to return the bodies of the terrorists to their families and allow them to be buried. Defense Minister Gantz will make a final decision this week.

Police this week discovered hundreds of weapons hidden underground, during a raid in the Bedouin town of Laqiya in the Negev.

Jewish Russian billionaire and former owner of NBA team the Brooklyn Nets, Mikhail Prokhorov, has made Aliyah and became an Israeli citizen. Prokhorov’s net worth is estimated at around $13.8 billion and unlike many other Russian oligarchs harboring close ties to President Vladimir Putin, he has not been hit with punitive sanctions by the West in the wake of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

There will be no fireworks at the Independence Day ceremony at Mount Herzl this year. The change has been made in order to protect veterans who suffer from PTSD.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 4-4-2022

News Update

On Saturday, the Yamam special anti-terror squad of the Border Police identified a vehicle, near Jenin, containing 4 Islamic Jihad affiliated terrorists who were suspected of planning an imminent terror attack. The security force engaged in a firefight with the terrorist. Three of the terrorists were killed and 4 Israeli officers were wounded. The vehicle was filled with weapons and ammunition. The fourth terrorist escaped.

The Shin Bet domestic security agency described the three gunmen as “ticking time bombs” and said they were responsible for at least one shooting against Israeli forces in the West Bank and were planning to carry out several other attacks in the immediate future. One of the officers wounded is a senior commander in the Yamam. He was shot in the chest. On Sunday morning he awoke from an induced coma at Rambam Medical Center in Haifa. PM Naftali Bennett said that he first met the 43-year-old officer several months ago and described him as “one of Israel’s finest field commanders.” He said, “He won hundreds of confrontations and battles, and I pray for his recovery and health.” The PM visited all of the wounded fighters at Rambam hospital earlier today.

Yesterday, security forces captured the fourth terrorist with the help of a Belgium Sheppard member of the elite IDF Canine Unit. To read more, click here.

Security forces arrested at least ten Palestinians during violent clashes near the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem’s Old City last night. To see a video of the clashes, click here.

PM Bennett and Jordan’s King Abdullah II spoke by phone yesterday. According to the Royal Palace, the two leaders spoke about regional cooperation, regional issues — chief among them the recent series of terror attacks that has claimed the lives of 11 Israelis in just one week, the consequent Israeli operations meant to thwart future attacks, as well as enabling freedom of worship for Palestinians on the Temple Mount during Ramadan. The king asked the PM to avoid imposing measures that could restrict access of Muslim worshippers to Jerusalem’s al-Aqsa Mosque during Ramadan for fear it could further exacerbate tensions.

Jerusalem District Police Commander Nati Gur said that the Israel Police is preparing for a “worst-case scenario” on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. To read more, click here.

Israeli farmers are destroying thousands of tons of fresh vegetables as produce exports to Russia and Ukraine have ground to a halt due to the ongoing war. Up to 50,000 tons of agricultural products are rotting in warehouses or facing certain destruction. Payments for goods have also stopped on account of the plummeting value of the ruble and sanctions in response to the brutal Russian invasion of Ukraine. To read more, click here.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 4-1-2022

News Update

Yesterday, a 28 year old Israeli man was stabbed in the chest by a terrorist with a screwdriver onboard a 364 line bus in the Gush Etzion area south of Jerusalem, near Neve Daniel. The terrorist was shot and killed by an armed civilian at the scene. The victim regained consciousness today, but is still in serious condition at Shaare Zedek Medical Center.

The IDF announced that is had begun an anti-terror operation called “Operation Breakwater”. 1,300 IDF soldiers from elite combat and special forces units have been deployed to assist thousands of police in major population areas throughout the country. PM Bennett asked all civilians with guns to carry them.

At dawn on Thursday, hundreds of soldiers raided the city of Jenin and arrested 31 terror suspects and confiscated firearms and explosives. Contrary to its usual practice of conducting raids at night, the IDF chose to conduct the mission openly in broad daylight to send a message to potential terrorists and to the local population. few hours prior to the raid, snipers were strategically stationed throughout the city of Jenin and in its refugee camp. During the raid, gunshots were fired at the troops. Soldiers fired back, killing 3 attackers. The operation lasted one hour. One IDF sniper was lightly wounded. To read more, click here.

Right-wing MK Itamar Ben Gvir visited the Temple Mount yesterday despite warnings that the visit could spark Arab violence. He said that his visit was intended to convey the message that we (Israel) are the owners here. For more, click here.

Thousands of Arabs and Jews attended the funeral of Police First Sergeant Amir Khoury, the Christian Arab killed in a shootout with the terrorist in Bnei Brak on Tuesday. Several buses with Bnei Brak residents attended the funeral in the northern town of Nofei Hagalil. The Bnei Brak city council is planning to discuss ways of officially honoring Khoury, including possibly renaming the street where he was killed, in his memory.

President Isaac Herzog and his wife visited the families of Yaakov Israel Shalom and Rabbi Avishay David Yechezkel, who were killed in the terror attack in Bnei Brak. The President also conveyed the condolences of Jordan’s King Abdulah and other world leaders.

Israel and the United Arab Emirates have concluded negotiations for a free trade agreement. The Economy Ministry in a statement described the agreement reached as “extensive and significant” and said it included regulation, customs, services, government procurement and electronic trade.