Israel news summary

Israel News for 1-13-2021

News Update

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The Health Ministry reported 9,025 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday. There are currently 1,042 people hospitalized in serious condition and 262 on ventilators. There have been 3,770 coronavirus related deaths since the start of the pandemic. Ultra-Orthodox areas are showing the highest infection rate. The health ministry is planning to request a 1 week extension of the current 2 week nationwide lockdown.

Transportation Minister Miri Regev was caught on camera holding a birthday party in her office in violation of health regulations that permit no more than 5 people at an indoor gathering. There were 14 people seated around a table at the party, with no masks or social distancing.

Over 1.8 million Israelis have already received the first dose of the vaccine. Tens of thousands have received the second dose.

A senior U.S. intelligence official said that Israel carried out airstrikes in Syria overnight using intelligence provided by the United States. The airstrikes targeted a series of warehouses, near the Iraqi border, used to store Iranian weapons and components for Iran’s nuclear program. Dozens of militants were killed or wounded. The US official said that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo discussed the airstrike with Mossad chief Yossi Cohen at a public meeting in popular Washington restaurant on Monday.

Lebanon is calling on the UN to condemn Israel for “Israel’s daily violations of its airspace amid intensifying drone reconnaissance and mock raids around the country.” In recent weeks Israeli fighter jets have carried out several low-altitude flights over Beirut and other major Lebanese cities. Israeli reconnaissance drones sometimes remain in Lebanese airspace for 24 hours at a time.

US casino magnate and philanthropist Sheldon Adelson died yesterday at the age of 87. Adelson was a major supporter of PM Netanyahu. He owned the free, daily newspaper “Israel Hayom” and a controlling stake in the right wing newspaper “Makor Rishon.” He also donated $250 million to Donald Trump’s election campaign. Adelson paid the highest price ever for a home in Israel when he bought the former residence of the US Ambassador to Israel in Herzliya Pituah for $67.6 million.

His Israeli wife Dr. Miriam Adelson wrote a eulogy to her late husband in “Israel Hayom” today. She wrote, “Sheldon was the love of my life. He was my partner in love, philanthropy, political activities and entrepreneurship. He was the proudest Jew in the world who saw the State of Israel not only as the realization of historical promises to the cherished people who had earned it but also as a gift of God to all mankind.” Sheldon Adelson will be buried in Israel.