Israel news summary

Israel News for 12-2-2022

News Update

IDF forces arrested a Palestinian suspected of several terrorist shooting attacks. Troops came under fire and explosives during the operation in Nablus early today. Troops returned fire and one attacker was reportedly wounded. No soldiers were harmed.

A bus was fired upon near the settlement of Ofra last night. No one was injured. Security forces are searching for the attackers.

Likud signed a coalition deal with Religious Zionism. The nationalist religious party will get control over the Finance Ministry in rotation with the Shas Party, the Immigration and Absorption Ministry, and head a new “National Missions Ministry”. A member of Religious Zionism will also hold a special ministerial level position in the Defense Ministry in charge of West Bank settlement construction. That minister will have full authority over land disputes in illegal outposts without having to answer to the Defense Minister, who has had authority over the military as well as civilian matters in the territories since the 1967 Six Day War.

Religious Zionism will also be given chairmanship over the new Knesset Constitution, Law and Justice committee which will take on responsibility for services to the religious community and will head a newly established Reforms Committee which will legislate changes in Israel’s judicial system.

Avi Maoz, the leader of the far-right Noam party who will be a member of the incoming government, said in an interview that he will not allow the Gay Pride parade to take place in Jerusalem. He will head the Jewish National Identity program with an initial budget of NIS 100 million for the first year, and a further NIS 50 million, in the year following. Prime Minister elect Netanyahu reacted to the statement saying, “The Gay Pride parade will take place in Jerusalem as it had in the past.”

Defense Minister Benny Gantz told a meeting of military attachés from 30 countries that Iran can be in possession of a nuclear bomb within two weeks, if it chooses to. He added that Israel was advancing plans to supply Ukraine with early warning systems and repeated the government’s position that condemns Russian attacks on the civilian population.

The United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday passed a resolution to mark the founding of the modern state of Israel in 1948 as a “catastrophe.” The resolution passed by a vote of 90-30 with 47 abstentions. The United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and most European Union countries including Germany voted against the anti-Israel resolution. The United Arab Emirates was one of the co-sponsors of the resolution.

Tel Aviv is no longer the world’s most expensive city according to The Economist’s Intelligence Unit’s (EIU) Worldwide Cost of Living rankings for 2022, which were published today. Tel Aviv, which topped last year’s rankings, has been pushed down to third place behind Singapore and New York, who tied for first place. For more, click here.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 11-30-2022

News Update

A female IDF soldier was run over by a terrorist driving a vehicle near the settlement of Kohav Ya’akov. The terrorist fled the scene, but was eventually shot and killed by Israeli forces after he was stopped at a roadblock. The soldier was evacuated to the hospital in serious but stable condition. The terrorist was a 45 year old father of 5 from the city of Betunia near Ramallah. He had an Israeli work permit and had worked at a supermarket.

IDF troops came under attack overnight when two military vehicles stalled just outside the town of Beit Ummar, near Hebron, on Tuesday morning. Rioters threw bombs and fired shots at soldiers, who responded with live fire. Palestinian sources report that three attackers were killed.

A report published by the State Comptroller found that 38% of female conscripts serving in the Israeli Prison system said that they experienced sexual abuse of some form during their service and that 70% of said abuse was committed by a permanent employee or a commander. In the IDF, 33% of female conscripts said they were sexually harassed at least once during their service, and 32% reported the abuse to a relevant supervisor. For more, click here.

Likud and Religious Zionism met for hours last night and today, and are reportedly prepared to sign a coalition agreement later today. As part of the agreement Religious Zionism leader Smotrich and Shas leader Deri will share the finance and interior ministries, trading places after 2 years. Coalition agreements have still not be signed with Shas or United Torah Judaism. Soon-to-be Prime Minister Netanyahu is reportedly planning to ask President Herzog for a 14 day extension to form a government. He needs time to pass a law in the Knesset that would allow Shas leader Deri to serve as a minister despite the fact that he served prison time for tax evasion.

Almost 6,000 electric cars were delivered to Israel in November, setting a new record. Tesla has led the way in November with 2,300 EV deliveries. The company plans opening a showroom in central Israel with a ‘pay and take’ policy. Chinese carmaker Geely leads the way in overall 2022 EV car sales in Israel. The sharp rise in EV sales is ahead of a purchase tax rise in Israel in January 2023.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 11-28-2022

News Update

Likud and Religious Zionism party leaders are meeting today to try to work out a coalition agreement that would allow the formation of a new government. A coalition agreement was signed with Noam, a small religious party that ran as part of the Religious Zionism list. Noam leader Avi Maoz will become a deputy minister in the Prime Minister’s Office with responsibility over immigration from Russia, education and foreign NGO’s operating in Israel. Opponents, including current Prime Minister Lapid and Defense Minister Gantz blasted the appointment, calling Maoz a racist for his attacks against the LGBT community. He is a proponent of conversion therapy for homosexuals. He also believes that women should not serve in the IDF since their role is to bear children and raise families.

The second victim of last week’s bombings in Jerusalem died of his wounds on Saturday and was laid to rest on Sunday. Tadesa Tashuma, who emigrated from Ethiopia 21 years ago, is survived by a wife and 6 children.

A delegation from the Palestinian Authority visited the family of the Israeli Druze man abducted by terrorists from a hospital bed in Jenin, whose body was later returned to his family by the Palestinians. Mahmoud al-Habbash, the religious affairs adviser to PA President Mahmoud Abbas, headed the delegation and said earlier on Friday the kidnapping was “shameful and diverged from the teachings of Islam, and those who don’t agree can seek out a different religion.” Three IDF Druze soldiers were arrested on Monday on suspicion of throwing an explosive device at a Palestinian home in the Bethlehem area, in apparent reaction to the abduction of the Druze man in Jenin. There were no casualties in the bombing attack.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 11-25-2022

News Update

Likud has signed a coalition agreement with Otzma Yehudit, led by MK Itamar Ben Gvir, which ran as part of the Religious Zionism list in the election. Ben Gvir will be appointed Minister for National Security, which is an expanded version of the Public Security Ministry. The new ministry will include the Real Estate Enforcement division and the West Bank Border Police division, in addition to the police and internal security services.

Otzma Yehudit will also get the Ministry of the Negev and Galilee and the Ministry of Heritage which, according to the Israeli government website – “is responsible for developing tangible and intangible national heritage assets, preserving content of national historical importance while making them accessible to the public, and encouraging the assimilation of national heritage into the education system and to IDF, as well as other activities.” The party will also get 1 deputy minister and 2 heads of committee.

Likud is planning to sign a coalition deal with Shas on Sunday and then one with United Torah Judaism (UTJ). Shas will likely get the Interior Ministry, Periphery Ministry (that as split off from the Negev and Galilee Ministry) and the Ministry of Religious Affairs. UTJ will likely get the Ministry of Housing and other deputy minister and committee posts. Then the pressure will focused on Betzalel Smotrich’s Religious Zionism, who will be the last remaining potential partner holding up the formation of a government.

In Bersheva, an 18 year old Israeli wearing an IDF uniform was hit by a car driven by a 39 year old Bedouin from Rahat in a suspected terror attack. The driver claims that he lost control of his car, but he has a record of nationalistic statements and social media posts. The victim suffered a broken leg.

Tiran Fero, the Israeli-Druze 18 year old who was abducted from a Jenin hospital by Islamic Jihad terrorists, was laid to rest in his hometown in northern Israel. His body was returned after intense Israeli and international diplomatic pressure and intervention. The terrorists thought that Fero was an Israeli soldier.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 11-23-2022

News Update

At around 7:05am today, a bomb exploded at a busy bus stop at the entrance to Jerusalem. A 16 year old yeshiva student was killed and over 20 other Israelis were injured. Some of the injuries were critical or serious. A half hour later, another bomb exploded at a bus stop in Ramot, in the northern part of Jerusalem. Three people were injured from shrapnel. Both bombs were detonated remotely using mobile phones. The attacks appeared to be planned and carried out by an organized terror cell. The bombs contained metal nails and other sharp objects, calculated to cause maximum casualties.

Massive numbers of police and security forces fanned out throughout Jerusalem to search for additional bombs at bus and light rail stops and to provide security at crowded locations. Security forces are hunting for the terror cell to prevent more attacks. Police said that they had received intelligence relating to a potential terror attack in Jerusalem, but had not received any information regarding details. Last night an explosive device was discovered on the light rail track near Jerusalem’s central bus station. It could have been intended to be part of today’s attack.

This is a developing story.

The boy murdered in today’s terror attack was 16 year old Aryeh Shchupak, who lived in Jerusalem’s Har Nof neighborhood and who also held Canadian citizenship. He was waiting at the stop for his transportation to his yeshiva high school in the nearby town of Beit Meir. His schoolmate was also injured in the attack and is listed in moderate-serious condition. Aryeh will be laid to rest today.

Tiran Fero, an 18 year old Druze Israeli was abducted by armed terrorists from a Jenin hospital, where he was brought from treatment after getting into a car accident in the West Bank. The terrorists apparently thought he was an IDF soldier. They disconnected him from the life saving equipment while he was still alive. He subsequently died. His parents and family are pleading with the terrorists to return his body.

Iran is blaming Israel for the killing of Revolutionary Guard member Colonel Davoud Jafari. He was killed by an explosive device that hit his vehicle on a road in the Damascus area. Iran is vowing revenge.

 

 

Israel news summary

Israel News for 11-21-2022

News Update

IDF troops arrested a wanted terrorist this morning near Jenin. Troops came under gunfire attack from Palestinian Islamic Jihad members as they were surrounding the terrorists home. Troops returned fire, killing one terrorist and wounded four others. Eight other terror suspects were arrested in overnight raids.

Religious Zionism party leader MK Betzalel Smotrich reportedly has said that he his willing to drop his demand for the Defense Ministry on the condition that he becomes Finance Minister as well as extensive responsibilities from the Defense Ministry related to Judea and Samaria. Smotrich is demanding that the entire issue of settlements in Judea and Samaria be transferred to the Finance Ministry, so that even if no one is appointed Defense Minister in the end, he will still be able to set the policies for the area. Netanyahu, however, has already given the Finance Ministry to Shas leader Aryeh Deri. But Deri might not be able to serve as minister, since he also served a prison sentence for tax evasion. The US administration is pressuring Netanyahu not to give Smotrich the Defense Ministry, although it’s highly unlikely that Netanyahu would make Smotrich Defense Minister under any circumstances.

Smotrich is also demanding that the coalition agreement include a clause obligating the new government to take steps to apply Israeli sovereignty over parts of Judea and Samaria. Likud is reportedly refusing to do that. Prime Minister Netanyahu had, in the past, been in favor of applying Israeli sovereignty over parts of Judea and Samaria, but then decided to shelve those plans in order to sign the Abraham Accords with the UAE and Bahrain.

The Otzma Yehudit party, which ran as part of the Religious Zionism list, has terminated coalition talks with Likud because Likud is refusing to give it the Ministry for the Development of the Periphery, the Negev and the Galilee. The party was reportedly promised the ministry and said that strengthening the Galilee and the Negev was part of its election platform.

The Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court ruled that former Prime Minster Ehud Olmert defamed Prime Minister Netanyahu and family and ordered Olmert to pay Netanyahu damages totaling around $18,000 as well as legal costs. Netanyahu sued Olmert for remarks Olmert made in 2021.

Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd., the Israeli Navy, and Israel’s Ministry of Defense have completed an advanced interception test of the C-DOME Naval Iron Dome missile defense System. The C-DOME is an advanced naval configuration of Rafael’s Iron Dome aerial defense system against short range missiles and is operated from the Israel Navy’s INS Oz Sa’ar 6 Magen class corvette. For more, click here.

Since the beginning of 2022, about 6,500 employees at Israeli tech companies have lost their jobs. For more, click here.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 11-18-2022

News Update

U.S. ambassador to Israel Tom Nides visited the mourning family of Tamir Avihai, one of the 3 Israelis killed in this weeks terror attack, at their home in the settlement of Kiryat Netafim. Nides had previously said he would not visit the settlements because that would “irate some people.” Avihai’s brother, Neriya, told Nides that the U.S. should investigate his brother’s murder just like the FBI decided to investigate the killing of journalist Shireen Abu Akleh.

President Herzog will make a state visit to Bahrain at the invitation of King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa. He will then travel to the UAE where he will meet President Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan. Israel and Bahrain are negotiating a free trade agreement that they hope to finalize by the end of the year.

For the first time since 2013, Prime Minister-elect Benjamin Netanyahu spoke by phone with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday. They spoke about strengthening economic and political relations, and offered each other condolences on the terror attacks that recently struck both countries.

Israel and Jordan signed a declaration of intent on Thursday at the UN climate conference to conserve and protect their shared Jordan River. The plan doesn’t go into specifics. It says that Israel and Jordan have promised to try to reduce river pollution by building up wastewater treatment facilities and upgrading sewer systems to prevent riverside cities from dumping raw sewage into the waters. The countries will also aim to promote sustainable agriculture, controlling runoff from farm fields and reducing the use of pesticides.

A fire that broke out in a house, that was storing a large amount of fuel, in northern Gaza killed 21 people including seven children on Thursday.

Israeli defense electronics company Elbit Systems Ltd. announced today that it has been awarded a contract to supply electronic warfare and airborne laser technologies to protect military helicopters of a country in Asia-Pacific. The contract, worth $200 million, will be implemented over four years.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 11-16-2022

News Update

An 18 year old Palestinian terrorist stabbed and killed 3 Israeli men and seriously wounded 3 others outside of the city of Ariel. The terrorist first attacked the Israeli guard at the entrance to the Ariel’s industrial zone, then proceeded to a nearby gas station and stabbed three more people there. He then stole a car, intentionally collided with another vehicle on a nearby highway and struck another person and attempted to steal another car before being stopped. He tried to run from the scene but was shot and killed by soldiers.

An IDF official said that the failure of the guards, at the entrance of the industrial zone, to report the attack immediately to the army prevented soldiers from being able to block the terrorist from getting onto the highway, where he continued his terror attack.

The Israelis killed in the attack were:

1. Moshe Ashkenazi, 59, a father of three and grandfather of two, who was a resident of the southern city of Yavne.

2. Michael Ladygin, 36 and father of 2, from Bat Yam. He made aliyah with his family from Ukraine five years ago.

3. Tamir Avihai, father of 6, from the settlement of Kiryat Netafim.

In the wake of the decision by the FBI to investigate the killing of Al Jazeera reporter Shireen Abu Akleh, outgoing Prime Minister Lapid said, “IDF soldiers will not be investigated by the FBI or any other foreign entity or state, no matter how friendly to Israel.” He added, “We will not abandon our soldiers to an investigation. Our strong protest was delivered to the American’s in the appropriate levels. The IDF is a moral military with values and its soldiers and commanders are protecting Israel, vigorously investigating any unusual incident and are committed to democratic values and the law.” The FBI decision came after 57 members of Congress asked FBI director Christopher Wray to investigate the circumstances of the Palestinian-American journalist’s death, which occurred when she was hit by a bullet while covering a Palestinian riot against IDF troops.

Likud has cancelled all meetings with potential coalition partners today after a contentious meeting between Prime Minister elect Netanyahu and Religious Zionism leader Smotrich, in which Netanyahu reportedly rejected Smotrich’s demand to be appointed Defense Minister in the new government.  He also refused to give Smotrich the Finance Ministry, his second choice, since that is most likely earmarked for Shas leader Aryeh Deri. Netanyahu reportedly told Smotrich that the government would need to act with moderation on diplomatic and security issues, at least until the end of the Biden administration. Smotrich is threatening not to join in the coalition if his demands are not met. Netanyahu cannot form a government without Religious Zionism’s 14 seats.

Israel’s annualized inflation rate is currently at 5.1%. For more, click here. 

An Israeli businessman living in Georgia (the country) was the target of an Iranian planned assassination attempt that was foiled by security services there. To read more, click here.

 

Israel news summary

Israel News for 11-14-2022

News Update

Soldiers shot and killed the driver of a vehicle that tried to ram them during an arrest raid in the West Bank town of Betunia today. Another person in the car was wounded.

Soon to be Prime Minister Netanyahu is meeting with his potential coalition partners in his effort to form a government. Otzma Yehudit leader Itamar Ben Gvir is reportedly planning to demand, as a condition for him joining, that the new government pass a law mandating the death penalty for convicted terrorists. He said, “In our proposal – a terrorist who is convicted of murder who acted out of a racist or nationalistic motivation, will be put to death by law.

Religious Zionism leader Betzalel Smotrich is reportedly pressuring Netanyahu to appoint him as Defense Minister in the new government. Netanyahu is not expected to do that. Smotrich only served in the IDF for 14 months, at the age of 28, so he clearly lacks the military experience and expertise to head up the ministry. The Religious Zionism party also reportedly wants the Education and Religious Affairs Ministries.

The 25th Knesset will be sworn in on Tuesday. To read more about the makeup of the new Knesset, click here.

According to Syrian reports, Israeli missiles struck an airbase and other Hezbollah positions in the province of Homs last night. Two Syrian soldiers were reportedly killed and 3 others wounded in the attack on the airbase.

A soldier shot and killed a man in his 40’s in Ra’anana, who allegedly tried to attack another man with a knife at a bus stop. The soldier thought that the attacker was carrying out a terror attack, which was not the case. Police are investigating whether the soldier followed the rules of engagement.

Two Israeli women were caught on surveillance camera walking alongside the suspected terrorist who reportedly placed the explosive device in Istanbul on Sunday that killed 8 and wounded 60. The women, from Ashdod, were on a vacation trip with a group of Israeli women and separated from the group to do some shopping. It was pure coincidence that found them walking next to the terrorist. The two women were shopping around 50 meters from the center of the explosion. No Israelis were hurt in the blast.

Israel news summary

Israel News for 11-11-2022

News Update

President Herzog will officially give former Prime Minister Netanyahu the mandate to form a government on Sunday. Netanyahu’s right-wing coalition has 64 Knesset seats. Netanyahu will now have 21 days to form a government. His first agenda will be negotiating the appointment of government ministers [not an easy task].

The IDF’s Advocate General has decided to prosecute two soldiers from the Netzah Yehuda battalion in the death of an elderly Palestinian man arrested by the troops. The Netzah Yehuda battalion was formed specifically for strictly Orthodox Jewish soldiers. The soldiers under prosecution are the First Lieutenant and Sergeant who commanded the arresting troops. For more, click here.

Qatari media reported that last month, Qatar arrested 8 Indian nationals involved in training the Qatar navy, under suspicion of spying for Israel.

MK Itamar Ben Gvir spoke at a memorial event commemorating the death of former Kach leader and MK Rabbi Meir Kahane, who supported deporting the Arabs as well as other seemingly racist policies. In his address, Ben Gvir, who is also accused of being racist and anti-Arab, said that he does not support deported the Arabs from Israel or any other laws against Arabs. but he does support deporting Arab terrorists. He is also in favor of allowing Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount as well as the dismantling of the Palestinian Authority. The US State Department spokesman condemned Ben Gvir’s appearance at Kahane’s memorial and urged “all parties to maintain calm, exercise restraint, and to refrain from actions that only serve to exacerbate tensions and that includes in Jerusalem.”

The Health Ministry reported that cholera has been detected in the Yarmouk Reservoir in northern Israel for the first time since a recent outbreak of the deadly disease in Lebanon and Syria. The Health Ministry chlorinated the water and cut off its flow to the Kinneret. Testing capabilities have also been set up for regular monitoring of the situation. The Yarmouk is not used for drinking water and is rarely used for swimming, however, it is a source for irrigation. The Health Ministry said that there was no danger to the population.

The District Planning and Building Committee approved the final blueprint of the construction of the new U.S. embassy compound in Jerusalem. The embassy building will be 10 stories high and it will be built on 50 dunams (12.3553 acres) of land. The construction plan includes office buildings, parking spaces, residential buildings for employees, and necessary security measures. Once the final permit is obtained, after any objections are heard, the construction is expected to take close to a decade.