Israel

The enduring legacy of Rav Ovadia Yosef

By Joe Wolfson, October 11, 2013

Who was Rabbi Ovadia Yosef? An aged rabbi responsible for countless offensive statements (on Arabs, Ashkenazim and countless others he saw as opponents) and the head of a political party with a reputation for corruption? Perhaps.

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Israel doesn’t need Beersheva-Eilat railway but Chinese spooks might

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 11, 2013

The security concerns raised in recent days by former intelligence chiefs over the possibility that a Chinese company may build the new Beersheva-Eilat railway is only one of the question-marks over the massive infrastructure project.

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Lawyer practises in British courts from Israel

By Nathan Jeffay, October 11, 2013

With law degrees from Cambridge and Harvard, Baruch Baigel’s resume is typical of the top-flight lawyers in the running for English Law Society awards later this month. But it holds one surprise — he has never practised law from a UK office.

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Netanyahu’s new ‘big’ Bar Ilan speech reassures Likud hawks

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 10, 2013

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu regretted agreeing to address the Bar-Ilan conference on Sunday, almost as soon as the university’s publicists began talking up the “big” speech.

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EasyJet say sorry to family barred from Israel flight

By Jonathan Kalmus, October 10, 2013

A mother and her five children were prevented from boarding an easyJet flight to Israel because of a passport close to expiry — after the airline failed to make it clear they could not travel.

Rikki Bamberger was flying to Jerusalem to join her husband Mark, whose mother had just died. She was travelling with her children aged between two- and 12-years-old.

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British rabbis react to Rabbi Ovadia Yosef's death

By Simon Rocker, October 10, 2013

Rabbi Abraham Levy, emeritus spiritual head of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews’ Congregation in London, said that Rav Ovadia Yosef’s “halachic authority and knowledge was unequalled and undisputed – he was admired throughout world Jewry, Sephardi and Ashkenazi alike.” He was “at ease with the poor and the great of the state of Israel and did so much to ‘restore the crown’ of the Se

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Rabbi Ovadia Yosef's death is political depth charge

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 10, 2013

As he did during his lifetime, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, who passed away on Monday, will continue to unite the party he served as spiritual leader. For a while, at least.

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Dutch official report supporting Hamas ‘promotes extremism’

By Sandy Rashty, October 10, 2013

A Jewish human-rights group has asked the Dutch Prime Minister to reject an advisory report that “demonises Israel”.

Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre, accused the Dutch parliament’s advisory council on international affairs of producing a one-sided report on the Middle East conflict.

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Burt out but Berger’s new health role

By Charlotte Oliver, October 10, 2013

Israel supporters have paid tribute to Alistair Burt’s fairness in dealing with Middle East affairs after his departure from the Foreign Office in David Cameron’s reshuffle this week.

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New job for woman who championed Israel’s Arabs

By Sandy Rashty, October 10, 2013

The director of an organisation that raises awareness about issues affecting Arab citizens of Israel, has stepped down after more than three years at the helm.

Alice Wood has left UK Task Force to take up a consultant position at a public affairs company.

“I’m sad to go, but I’m really ambitious and want to try new things. I decided that I needed a new challenge,” she said.

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