Israel news summary

Israel News for 6-21-2019

Graveyard Searches
Syrian sources are reporting that Syrian and Russian personnel are searching for missing Israelis in a cemetery in the Damascus area, where the bones of Zachary Baumel, which were brought to Israel two months ago, were also allegedly located.

Journalist Roi Kais reported on Thursday on Kan 11 News that the cemetery in question is a cemetery for “shaheeds” in the Al-Yarmuk camp in southern Damascus. The cemetery has been shut down for the searches and authorities are not permitting anyone to get close to it.

A source in the Syrian opposition estimates that the Russians are asking the Assad regime to step up searches for the missing Israelis.

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Election Update
Israel’s Arab parties – Balad, Hadash, Ra’am and Ta’al, have announced that they will run together in a joint list in the upcoming election.

In the April elections, the four parties ran as two lists – Ra’am with Balad and Hadash with Ta’al. Both lists won enough seats to enter the Knesset, but the Ra’am-Balad list narrowly squeaked past the threshold with four seats. Hadash-Ta’al got six seats, bringing the total number of Knesset members for the Arab community to 10. In the 2015 elections, however, the joint list of all four parties won 13 seats.

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More Updates

Blue and White number 2 Yair Lapid tweeted against deferments and demanded that Israel be a state for all of its citizens. The tweets come as his party is reportedly trying to woo the Haredi parties to join with them in a future potential government.

Avigdor Lieberman, head of Yisrael Beytenu, said that he will not join a narrow left-wing government. He will only join a unity government that includes both Likud and Blue and White.

Rafi Peretz, head of the United Right-Wing parties, has offered Ayelet Shaked the second slot on the right-wing list if she joins. But Shaked wants the number 1 spot, claiming that only she can unite the right-wing voters and win the maximum number of seats for the list.

Electric Plane
Eviation Aircraft Ltd., an Israeli aviation company, displayed the Eviation Alice, an entirely electric commuter plane, at the Paris Air Show this week.

The Alice, which can seat nine passengers and two pilots, can fly at 273 miles per hour for up to 621 miles on one battery charge, at a cost of $200 per hour of flight. The battery comprises 65% of the plane’s weight. The plane’s unusual and modern look, which Eviation CEO Omar Bar-Yohay described as “whale-shaped,” is due to its aerodynamic efficiency.

Eviation already has orders for a “double-digit” number of airplanes from US regional carrier Cape Air, with which Eviation signed its first deal. Each plane will carry a $4 million price tag.

“Operating at a fraction of the costs of conventional jetliners, our Alice will redefine how people travel regionally and usher in a new era of flying that is quieter, cleaner, and cost-effective,” Bar-Yohay said.

The company is expecting Alice to be ready for commercial use by 2022.

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