European Jewish Congress
Israeli Press Review of 07.06.2016
Israeli Press Review
Israeli Press Review of 07.06.2016

Major Headlines
  • NGO claims second terrorist executed in Hebron incident

Sgt. Elor Azaria is currently on trial for manslaughter for the March 24 shooting of Abdel Fatah al-Sharif who attacked IDF soldiers, but was shot and wounded. Several minutes later, Azaria shot and killed the wounded and immobile terrorist.

The shooting, documented on a video distributed by B’Tselem, went viral online and triggered a national debate over Azaria’s guilt or innocence.

A second terrorist, Ramzi al-Kasrawi, was also shot and killed during the incident. Until now the assumption has been that al-Kasrawi was shot in self-defence, while the situation was still dynamic and he was attacking the soldiers.

But according to the two Hebron witnesses interviewed by B’Tselem, Nur Abu Ayasha and Amani Abu Ayasha, al-Kasrawi was shot and immobilised, and then only later shot in the head. If true, the summary execution would constitute a war crime.

The IDF responded that B’Tselem’s claims “do not match the findings of our operational investigation, and contradict the information the IDF has on the incident.

The IDF stated that the shots fired at al-Kasrawi were necessary in order to “remove the threat while he was attacking the soldiers with a knife.”

Click here to read the full article in Jerusalem Post


  • Bennett further criticizes Netanyahu

Education Minister Naftali Bennett issued a backhanded attack against Prime Minister Netanyahu on Sunday during a speech he delivered on Sunday to mark Jerusalem Day at a rally held a the Merkaz Harav Yeshiva, Yediot Aharonot reports.

Without specifically mentioning Netanyahu’s name, Bennett told his audience, “You can’t be for Israel in Hebrew and for establishing a Palestinian state in English. Only when we are united and determined will the world leave us alone. Until then, we will be implored to divide Jerusalem again,”

Addressing the international peace initiative which was held in Paris on Friday, Bennett said: “There are those, in Israel and abroad, who attach themselves to different Arab initiatives, according to which we would have to divide the land, divide Jerusalem and return to the 1967 lines. The world pressures and we think there is a need to appease them. On this evening, I say to those people: That will never happen. We all stand as a (bulwark) to ensure that our country is complete. We won’t stutter, we won’t be confused and we won’t zigzag.”

“The time has come to state unequivocally that the land of Israel belongs to the Jewish people: in Hebrew, English, Russian, French, in the summer, in the winter, when there are elections or when there are not elections. Why? Because the world is listening to us, to every word. The world recognises weakness just as it recognises strength. The world recognises and smells when we are unsure of our rights to the land and attacks us with a series of boycotts,” he declared.

Following Bennett’s attacks against Netanyahu, which have been launched over the past few weeks, new Minister of Defence Avigdor Lieberman sent a message to Bennett, advising him to "relax." Referencing his speech which he delivered upon his entry into the government, Lieberman made a sarcastic jibe, stating: "I recommended that he go to the same doctor for surgery to lengthen (his) short fuse."

Responding to Bennett’s attacks on Jerusalem Day, a senior official in the Likud party said: “It is an absurd situation when the most threatening element to a right-wing government under Likud is the chairman of the Bayit Yehudi party.” He went on to criticise what he termed Bennett’s “hypocritical campaign which knows no limits.”

“If Bennett insists on taking his party out of the government because of personal motives, the responsibility for the consequences will be his entirely. He shouldn’t try and sell it to the public that he is doing it out of ideological motives because no one will buy it.”

Click here to read the full article in Yediot Aharonot


  • Survey: Majority of Israeli public fearful of visiting Jerusalem

A majority of the Israeli public have refrained from visiting Jerusalem in the past year due to security concerns, according to a poll released this week.

According to the Smith Research Centre poll commissioned by the Commanders for Israel's Security movement, 57 percent of non-Jerusalem residents said they had feared visiting Jerusalem in light of the recent wave of violence in the capital, the Jerusalem Post reports.

Seventy-three percent of Israeli Jews surveyed also said they would feel safer if Israel separated the Jewish and Arab neighbourhoods in Jerusalem.

In addition, the poll shows that 64% of women as opposed to 49% of men expressed concern over visiting the capital. 

The poll conducted last week, when Avigdor Liberman was appointed as defence minister, also found that 85% of constituents who voted for his Yisrael Beytenu party had feared visiting Jerusalem even once during the past year. 

Religious Israelis were the most apprehensive according to the poll, with 61% saying they feared visiting Jerusalem in the past year, while 58% of secular and 53% of "traditional" Israelis expressed fear.

The Commanders for Israel's Security movement is a coalition of some 200 former senior members of the IDF, Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency), Mossad and police forces who advocate in support for a two-state solution.

Click here to read the full article in Jerusalem Post

Tuesday, June 07, 2016
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