European Jewish Congress
Israel Press Review of 24/11/2016
Israeli Press Review
Israel Press Review of 24/11/2016

Major Headlines 
  • Israel asks Greece and Croatia for help in fighting fires

Israel asked Greece and Croatia on Wednesday for planes to help fight forest fires that have raged across the country for the past two days, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said.

A lack of rain combined with very dry air and strong easterly winds have spread forest fires throughout central and northern Israel. Scores of homes have been damaged or destroyed but no deaths or serious injuries have been reported.

Local weather forecasters said the tinder-dry conditions and strong winds appeared set to continue for several days with little chance of rain.

A statement from Netanyahu's office said that the Greek and Croatian prime ministers, Alexis Tsipras and Andrej Plenkovic, "responded immediately" to his request "and promised to send firefighting aircraft as soon as possible".

Police have not yet said whether any of the fires were set deliberately.

Click here to read the full article in Reuters


  • Israel orders investigation of German submarine purchase

Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit announced on Wednesday that the Israel police will look into the purchase of German submarines, after it was revealed that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's attorney David Shimron had represented the German ThyssonKrupp corporation, raising concerns over a possible conflict of interest. The deal cost $1.5 billion.

Suspicions of impropriety were heightened when former defence minister Moshe Ya’alon said he was sidelined on the purchase plans, which went forward after he was replaced earlier this year.

Channel 10 reported this week that Netanyahu had personally intervened in the awarding of the contract. Netanyahu denied the report, and said he was only made aware of Shimron's connection to the firm in recent days.

The Justice Ministry issued the following statement in light of the investigation: “The attorney general conducted further consultation meetings regarding the submarine deal, which included the state attorney and other officials from the Justice Ministry, as well as the head of the Israel Police Investigation and Intelligence Department.”

The statement explained that the consultations focused on “new information received by the police today, as well as other developments on the matter. At the end of the discussion, the attorney general decided to instruct the government to conduct an investigation led by the Israel Police on the different aspects of the affair.”

Click here to read the full article in Yediot Aharonot


  • Four thousand year-old version of Rodin’s Thinker discovered in Israel

A unique Bronze Age pottery jug with a human figurine on top, almost 4,000 years old but still in extraordinary condition, has been uncovered at an archaeological dig in the Israeli city of Yehud, Ha’aretz reports

One hand of the sculpted figure supports the figure's head. The elbow of the other arm rests on one knee and the hand of that arm rests on the other knee.

Although it is much smaller and is sitting on a pot, the image looks very much like a Canaanite version of Rodin's "The Thinker".

The statue from 3800 years ago uncovered in Yehud, after restoration at the IAA laboratory

Nothing like it has ever been found, certainly not in Israel. The jug is perfectly typical of the time and place, but the figure on top is not.

Click here to read the full article in Ha’aretz

Thursday, November 24, 2016
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