Israel

Irish dancers cancel Israel contest after threats from boycotters

By Naomi Firsht, July 7, 2015

An Irish dance academy was forced to cancel the first ever Irish dance competition to be held in Israel after receiving threatening messages from an anti-Israel group.

The Carey Academy Israel was set to hold the “1st Israeli Feis” in Tel Aviv on August 15 but called it off after a protest outside its UK dance studio in Birmingham.

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Ryanair to launch £20 flights to Eilat - but there's a catch

By Charlotte Oliver, July 7, 2015

Budget travellers will no doubt be celebrating Ryanair’s announcement that it will soon be flying to Eilat – the first time the airline has run routes to Israel.

But before you pack the sunscreen, there is a catch: it will only be flying from Hungary, Lithuania and Poland.

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Israeli police officer implicated in bribery scandal found dead

By Charlotte Oliver, July 6, 2015

Ephraim Bracha, Israel’s highest ranking detective, has taken his own life amid claims of bribery and corruption.

The 55-year-old, who headed the Israel Police’s National Fraud Unit, was found dead early on Sunday morning near his home in the city of Modi’in.

His death followed recent reports that the father-of-four had provided suspects with information about their cases.

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Returning city families usher kibbutz renaissance

By Shira Rubin, June 25, 2015

Hadar Shlomo remembers a childhood in Kibbutz Nir-Am in southern Israel as an experience "lacking self-expression and freedom".

She recalled with distaste how all the families ate in the same dining room, received the same allowance, and were provided with two pairs of shoes per year - one for the winter months, and a pair of sandals ahead of the summer.

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Hawkish Israeli minister Silvan Shalom favours restart of peace talks

By Orlando Radice, June 22, 2015

Israeli Interior Minister Silvan Shalom has said that he is in favour of a resumption of negotiations towards a two-state solution as soon as the world powers’ talks with Iran have come to a conclusion.

The minister, who would head up any such diplomatic process with the Palestinians, said: “We want to resume negotiations but it takes two to tango.”

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Jewish leaders condemn attack on Jesus ‘miracle’ church

By Naomi Firsht, June 19, 2015

Jewish leaders around the world have condemned a suspected arson attack on a church in northern Israel where Jesus was supposed to have fed the “five thousand” with fish and bread.

Hebrew graffiti found on a wall suggested Jewish extremists may have been behind the attack on the Roman Catholic church of Tabgha on the Sea of Galilee on Thursday.

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Israeli ambassador to UK Daniel Taub to leave post this summer

By Naomi Firsht, June 19, 2015

Israel's Ambassador to the UK Daniel Taub and his wife, Zehava, will be returning to Israel this summer, the Israeli embassy announced today.

Ambassador Taub took up his post four years ago and since then Israel-UK trade has doubled.

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Boycott motion flops at Reading University

By Naomi Firsht, June 12, 2015

An Israel boycott motion at Reading University’s student union failed today.

Students were able to vote from Monday to Friday this week on a motion to boycott Israeli organisations operating beyond the Green Line, but the total number of votes only reached 180, 20 below the minimum 200 needed to make a quorum or valid vote.

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Twitter brings crowd to funeral of Holocaust survivor with no relatives

By Franciska Fabriczki, June 10, 2015

A Twitter post about the funeral of a 93-year-old Holocaust survivor with no remaining family went viral earlier today, leading to over 100 people attending.

Former banker Rachel Steinmetz tweeted at dawn on June 10, asking her followers to attend the funeral of a 93-year-old woman, who was being flown in from her home in New York to be buried in Israel.

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Hamas struggles against pro-Islamic State groups in Gaza

By Naomi Firsht, June 8, 2015

Hamas is trying to control a variety of jihadi groups inside Gaza who are believed to be behind recent attacks on Israel.

Salafist militants who support Islamic State are thought to have carried out bombings at Hamas security posts, and shot rockets at Israeli towns, actions that have provoked reprisals from Israel.

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