Israel news summary

Israel News for 3-19-2021

News Update

The Health Ministry reported 1,225 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, putting the contagion rate at 1.9%. There are currently 558 people hospitalized in serious condition. There have been 6,071 coronavirus related deaths since the start of the pandemic.

Israel has completed vaccinating over 100,000 Palestinian workers. 

President Reuven Rivlin has been invited to address a joint session of the U.S. Congress before his term as Israel’s president comes to an end on July 9. The invitation came from the Democratic and Republican leaders of the House and Senate. Whether Rivlin actually comes depends on the state of the coronavirus. Rivlin has received a number of similar invitations from other countries, including Romania, Bulgaria and Portugal.

The International Criminal Court said yesterday that it has sent formal notices to Israel and the Palestinian Authority about its impending investigation into possible war crimes, giving them a month to seek deferral by proving they are carrying out their own investigations. Israel has 3 weeks to respond. President Rivlin and IDF Chief of Staff Kochavi are currently visiting France, Germany and Austria to garner support against the ICC.

The UAE will not be giving PM Netanyahu the opportunity to visit prior to next weeks election in order to avoid giving him a pre-election boost. Netanyahu was supposed to visit the UAE last week but cancelled at the last minute. He said that Jordan had refused to allow him to fly through its airspace after a dispute with Israeli security guards prevented a private visit to Jerusalem by Jordan’s crown prince. UAE presidential advisor and former foreign minister Anwar Gargash tweeted, “From the UAE’s perspective, the purpose of the Abrahamic Accords is to provide a robust strategic foundation to foster peace and prosperity with the State of Israel and in the wider region. The UAE will not be a part in any internal electioneering in Israel, now or ever.”