September 18, 2013 |
JERUSALEM -- A top Israeli commander predicted that embattled Syrian President Bashar Assad will hold on to power for years to come, but he downplayed the threat that Israel is vulnerable to the regime's chemical weapons arsenal. “I don't think that we were under chemical threat even for a moment, not at all,” Maj. Gen. Yair Golan, head of the Israel Defense Forces' northern command, said in an interview with the Israeli newspaper Yedioth Aharonot. Golan said Assad should be removed for power on moral grounds, but predicted that the Syrian president will hang on despite the growing international pressure against him. “He will remain for years to come," Golan said.
September 17, 2013 |
JERUSALEM -- A Palestinian was killed during an Israeli military raid early Tuesday in the West Bank city of Jenin, Israeli and Palestinian sources reported. In a statement , the Israeli Defense Forces said soldiers entered Jenin overnight to make an arrest of "a wanted terrorist" when a riot erupted. Israeli soldiers came under attack from Molotov cocktails, improvised grenades and live fire and responded in self-defense, the IDF said. Several Palestinians were reported injured in the clashes, including one who died of his wounds in an Israeli hospital.
September 16, 2013 |
JERUSALEM -- Israel's Supreme Court on Monday tossed out a controversial law that allowed police to jail refugees and undocumented migrants for up to three years without trial, a key part of the government's recent crackdown against mostly African asylum seekers who had been flooding into the country. A panel of nine High Court judges ruled unanimously that the Law for Prevention of Infiltration -- which took effect in 2012 -- violated human rights. An estimated 2,000 asylum seekers, mostly from Eritrea and other African nations, are believed to be in Israeli detention facilities.
September 9, 2013 |
ABU DIS, West Bank - The year Ali Ayad was born, his father broke ground on a majestic home perched on a bluff overlooking Jerusalem, with views of the Dead Sea in one direction and the golden Dome of the Rock in the other. For all of his 59 years, Ayad's life has revolved around the 1-acre plot. He played under the olive trees as a boy and became manager after the home was converted into the Cliff Hotel. He met his Norwegian wife from behind the reception desk, married her in the dining room and raised two daughters amid the daily bustle of visiting tourists and diplomats.
September 7, 2013 |
JERUSALEM -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reacted coolly Saturday to comments on Twitter over the weekend by Iran's foreign minister, and purportedly its new president, wishing Jews a happy new year on the holiday of Rosh Hashanah. Netanyahu, who has been urging the United States and the international community to crack down on Iran's disputed nuclear program, scoffed at suggestions that the widely circulated messages signal a more moderate approach by Iran and accused the Islamic Republic of trying to fool the world.
September 1, 2013 |
JERUSALEM - Israel braced for rockets and got a diplomatic bombshell instead. The Obama administration's surprise decision to delay a U.S. strike against Syria to allow for congressional debate left anxious Israelis relieved Sunday that any potential blow-back from Syria would be postponed for at least a week. But there was hand-wringing inside government offices over how Obama's hesitancy will be interpreted in the restive region and what it says about U.S. assurances to Israel that it will use military force to stop Iran from obtaining a nuclear bomb.
August 31, 2013 |
JERUSALEM - Israelis reacted warily Saturday to the Obama administration's decision to delay a strike against Syria, warning the move would likely be seen in the region as a sign of weakness. Officials and pundits were particularly worried about how the delay would be interpreted in Iran, which is facing U.S. pressure to halt its nuclear development program, which the U.S. and Israel believe is aimed at building nuclear weapons. Iran will see the U.S. as a “paper tiger," said analyst Zvi Yehezkeli of Israel's Channel 10. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued no formal reaction Saturday night.
August 30, 2013 |
If there's anything that Israeli soldiers and Palestinian civilians could agree on, the joys of "Gangnam Style" might have been on that list. But alas, a group of Israeli soldiers are in hot water after video surfaced of the troops dancing with Palestinian locals to Psy's K-Pop hit at a Hebron nightcub, while they were ostensibly on patrol. It's the latest of many impromptu Psy tribute dances that have gotten its subjects in trouble with authorities. And it's not the first time Israeli Defense Forces troops have been warned about pop music dance-offs -- a 2010 video of soldiers dancing to Kesha's "Tik Tok" in Hebron also earned them rebuke from their superiors after it went viral.
August 26, 2013 |
JERUSALEM -- In one of the most violent clashes in years between Israelis and Palestinians in the West Bank, Israeli security forces killed three Palestinians early Monday during a raid at the Qalandia refugee camp near Jerusalem. Palestinian medical officials said two others were in critical condition and 19 were wounded. All were shot in the chest and upper body, according to doctors at Ramallah Hospital. Israeli border police and soldiers entered the camp before dawn to make an arrest, prompting hundreds of Palestinians to riot against the operation by throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails, according to Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld.
August 26, 2013 |
JERUSALEM - Palestinians warned Monday that newly restarted peace talks could be derailed after a deadly clash between Palestinian refugees and Israeli security forces. Three Palestinians were shot and killed at the Kalandia refugee camp near Jerusalem. Israeli security forces say they fired in self-defense after a predawn raid to arrest a suspected militant sparked a riot among residents. It was the deadliest such clash since 2009, when three Palestinians were killed in Nablus during a standoff against Israeli soldiers attempting to arrest them.