Israel News for 8-4-17

No Death Penalty
The IDF’s Military Advocate General Brig. Gen. Sharon Afek announced that he will not seek the death penalty for the terrorist who murdered three members of the Salomon family in the settlement of Halamish earlier this month.

Afek’s announcement comes just a few days after Prime Minister Netanyahu declared his support for putting the terrorist to death. Other ministers supporting the death penalty were Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman, Education Minister Naftali Bennett and Intelligence Minister Yisrael Katz as well as The Legal Forum For Israel.

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New Barrier
Israel will be constructing a new underground barrier at locations along it’s border with Egyptian Sinai to prevent tunnel infiltrations by ISIS terrorists. The barrier is expected to be complete within one-and-a-half years at a cost of around NIS 3.4 billion. The barrier will be identical to that which is currently being built along the Gaza border.

In February, the Egyptian army destroyed six tunnel openings between Gaza and the Sinai, causing concern in Israel that ISIS has plans to infiltrate into the country.

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Likud Surging
According to the latest poll numbers, PM Netanyahu’s Likud party would win 30 Knesset seats if elections were held now. That’s the same number that the party currently holds, but is up by five seats from previous polls. Yeah Atid would increase its seats from its current 10 up to 20.

Naftali Bennett’s Bayit Yehudi party would jump from 8 seats to 12. The main opposition party Zionist Union would fall from 24 seats to just 16. The Ultra Orthodox Sephardic party Shas could drop from seven to four, and can potentially even drop below the 3.25% minimum threshold, which would exclude it from the Knesset altogether.

The boots line is that Netanyahu’s right wing government looks like it will be in power for the foreseeable future.

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Gay Pride Parade
More than 22,000 people attended yesterday’s gay pride parade in Jerusalem. Security was tight as police checked everyone entering the parade area. Twelve people were detained for questioning on suspicion that they intended to disrupt and harm the march. One of them was found carrying a knife.

To view images of the parade click here.

Close Call
Last week a terrorist stabbed and severely injured a 42 year old Jewish employee of a supermarket in Yavneh. Another Yavneh resident, Shlomo Brill, was also shopping in the store with his wife during the attack. Just moments before the attack, terrorist, a teenage Palestinian, asked him if he worked in the store. When he said no, the Palestinian walked away. Brill had no idea he had just escaped possible death until a few minutes later, after the terrorist attacked and was subsequently captured. Brill calls his close call a miracle.

The stabbing victim, Niv Gil Nehemia, has stabilized but his life is still in danger.

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Teva Down
Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (NYSE: TEVA; TASE: TEVA) announced today that, by the end of 2017, it will have cut 7,000 jobs, and that it will exit from 45 markets and close 15 factories by the end of 2018. The company’s share price is currently down 16.7% on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. Teva is one of the world’s largest producers of generic pharmaceuticals.

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