The Shin Bet and Israel Police announced today that they arrested eight Arab Israelis in East Jerusalem for being part of a terror cell. The terrorists were planning to carry out shooting attacks in Jerusalem. Most of the terrorists arrested were minors and some were members of Hamas. The cell was formed while the suspects were serving prison sentences for participating in violent demonstrations.
The Shin Bet stated, “Thwarting the network prevented the realization of serious terrorist attacks in Jerusalem, and its exposure again demonstrates the great risks of terrorists with Israeli identity cards who enjoy freedom of movement, access to means of warfare, and the relative ease of carrying out attacks.”
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Regulation Bill Postponed
Sources report that PM Netanyahu and Bayit Yehudi head Naftali Bennet have agreed to postpone the second and third readings of the controversial Regulations Bill in the Knesset until after Donald Trump is inaugurated as US President. The bill, that would legalize settlements built on privately owned Palestinian land, has already passed its first reading.
The PM has expressed his opposition to the bill but is supporting it based on an agreement he reached with Bennet, in order to hold the coalition together. The Attorney General has also stated his opinion that the bill will not hold up before the Supreme Court.
The government’s plan, based on a suggestion by Defense Minister Lieberman, is to avoid passing the bill while Obama is still president, and avoid the risk of him taking action against Israel at the UN. The government is assuming that the international repercussions against Israel will be muted with Trump as president.
Meanwhile, security forces are training for the evacuation of Amona, which is scheduled for December 25th. A clause specifically legalizing Amona was removed from the regulations bill as a condition for getting the Kulanu party to vote for the bill. Residents of Amona, along with hundreds of supporters, are preparing to resist.
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Was it Arson?
In the aftermath of the massive fires that raged throughout Israel last month, only 3 indictments against 6 Israeli Arabs have been filed for involvement is setting minor fires, not the major blazes that caused extensive damage to Haifa and Zichron Ya’acov.
Fire authorities are reluctant to say what proportion of the blazes were the result of arson, and Police declined to comment on Fire and Rescue Authority statements regarding the arson investigations.
A police source said, “There is a difference between the Fire Authority investigation and criminal law, and evidence that a specific person lit a fire because of specific reason. Maybe there are cases that the Fire Authority says that they have evidence of arson, but we cannot say if someone did it.”
At the time of the fires the Prime Minister and other government ministers classified most of them as arson and terrorism. Investigators are working hard to determine whether those claims were true.
For further reading click here. www.jpost.com/Arab-Israeli-Conflict/Despite-claims-of-mass-arson-only-3-indictments-filed-for-recent-blazes-474888
Over 42,000 flocks of cranes migrate from Africa to Europe every year. They stop off at Israel’s Hula Lake along the way.
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