European Jewish Congress
Israeli Press Review of 08.07.2016
Israeli Press Review
Israeli Press Review of 08.07.2016

Major Headlines
  • High Court rejects petitions against Israel-Turkey deal

Israel’s High Court of Justice rejected on Thursday three petitions which aimed to strike down the government's agreement with Turkey, the Jerusalem Post reports.


The petitions had brought forward two central arguments: that by agreeing to compensate the families of the victims of the 2010 Mavi Marmara incident, the government was agreeing to finance terror; and that the agreement should be voided because it did not guarantee Hamas's expulsion from the country.

Rejecting the first argument, the court ruled that the government was making a "humanitarian gesture." Two days ago Justice Uri Shoham had indicated his disapproval of the argument, saying “just because there is an agreement which contains certain elements, it does not mean you can say the government is financing terrorist operations.”

In explaining its decision, the court ruled that it was up to the government to determine the nature of the compromise reached with Turkey on this subject. In the previous hearing, the justices had said that the agreement clearly seems to be an issue of statecraft, which courts are not equipped to judge and have no jurisdiction over.

Click here to read the full article in Jerusalem Post


  • Commission recommends inclusion of Sephardic Jewish history in curriculum

In an effort to increase education of Sephardic and Mizrahi Jewish heritage, a commission appointed by Education Minister Naftali Bennett submitted its recommendations on the matter on Thursday, Yediot Aharonot reports. 

The Biton Commission, headed by poet Erez Biton, recommended including questions about Sephardic and Mizrahi Jewish communities in the history matriculation exam; introducing a new major for high school students that will focus on Sephardic and Mizrahi Jews; introducing the issue of the kidnapped Yemeni children into the school curriculum; adding pieces by Sephardic and Mizrahi poets and other writers to the literature curriculum; taking students on trips to Balkan countries, Spain and Morocco; taking students on trips to graves of great Torah scholars; and having an equal representation of Sephardic/Mizrahi and Ashkenazi Jews in the Council for Higher Education in Israel.

Implementing the recommendations for all age groups in the education system is estimated to cost some NIS 500 million a year.

For years, Sephardic and Mizrahi Jews protested the fact their own history was not properly represented in school curriculums, leading Minister Bennett four months ago to form the Biton Commission to address that issue.

According to the commission, "the current curriculum has been written from a European point of view and only superficially incorporates the history of Sephardic and Mizrahi Jews, diminishing their part in the history of the people of Israel."

Click here to read the full article in Yediot Aharonot


  • Yemeni children affair report published online

An online version of the Kedmi Committee’s official report on the disappearance of children of Yemenite immigrants was published on Thursday, Yediot Aharonot reports.

The report was initially released in 2001, but was made available online via the National Library’s website following a more recent public demand to have access to the committee’s confidential protocols. Despite the public outcry, the protocols themselves will remain sealed by government decree for several more decades, until the year 2071.

The committee, headed by Judge Jacob Kedmi, did not find a factual basis to verify the systematic and organised kidnapping of the children. It did, however, find several cases where children were given up for adoption without the parents’ knowledge or consent. Regarding such cases, the committee accepted the claim that the children given up for adoption were living in institutions without any connection to their birth parents.

The National Library stated that the report unearthed important and disturbing information on “the ease with which infants were hospitalised without supervision, documentation and at times without allowing family members to visit.” Among other points, the committee described how many children were buried without the notification of their parents.

Though the committee stated that in certain cases the records in its possession “clearly show that the child had passed away,” it admitted that it “lacks any information that could point to a cause of death, date of death or place of burial.”

Click here to read the full article in Yediot Aharonot

Friday, July 08, 2016
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