Israeli government

Diskin attack on Netanyahu a sign of leadership ambition

By Anshel Pfeffer, December 12, 2013

Former Shin Bet Chief Yuval Diskin emerged last week as a possible future rival to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as he sternly criticised the government’s policy on Iran and the talks with the Palestinians.

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Disappointment over Israeli failure on Mandela funeral

By Daniel Easterman, December 10, 2013

In what South African Jewish leaders increasingly see as a farce, Israel will not send any major leader to Nelson Mandela’s funeral.

It emerged that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would not be attending due to the cost of the journey, and President Shimon Peres has bowed out over concerns about his health.

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Bedouin plan critics have a point

By Martin Bright, December 6, 2013

Last week’s “day of rage” against Israeli government plans to move tens of thousands of Bedouin Arabs in the Negev desert to purpose-built settlements was predictable enough.

Even more predictable was the letter to the Guardian from musicians, artists, fashion designers, activists and, naturally, Jemima Khan opposing the so-called Prawer-Begin plan.

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Battle over Knesset bill to create one chief rabbi of Israel

By Daniel Easterman, December 3, 2013

Israel’s Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi, David Lau, has angrily rejected a proposed Knesset bill that would combine the separate Ashkenazi and Sephardi chief rabbi positions into a single role.

Rabbi Lau argued that Israel should not break from tradition and that it was still necessary to maintain “two rabbis of an equal standing, like in the times of the Tannaim Abtalion and Shmaya”.

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Israel’s leaders divided over Iranian nuclear deal

By Anshel Pfeffer, November 28, 2013

The interim agreement signed in Geneva in the early hours of Sunday morning was met with a mixture of derision and alarm by most of Israel’s political leadership. However, former intelligence chiefs and President Shimon Peres gave the deal a much more nuanced reception.

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Let Jews visit Temple Mount this Chanucah, says MK

By Daniel Easterman, November 26, 2013

A member of the Knesset has told police chiefs they must allow Jews to visit and pray at the Temple Mount this Chanucah.

Miri Regev, who belongs to the right-wing of the Likud- Beiteinu ruling coalition, spoke to police chiefs at a special Knesset Committee hearing, telling them that they "must allow Jews to go up to the site on Chanucah".

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Foreign Secretary William Hague hopes Israel will be included in nuclear talks

By Marcus Dysch, November 20, 2013

Foreign Secretary William Hague has said he hopes that Israel will join an international conference aimed at creating a nuclear weapons-free Middle East.

Mr Hague said there had been a “small amount of progress” made by Britain in attempting to convene a session including countries from across the region before the end of the year.

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Israeli government build new towns on Bedouin land

By Anshel Pfeffer, November 14, 2013

The Israeli government authorised on Sunday the construction of two new towns in the Negev Desert on land partly occupied by a Bedouin tribe.

The community of Hiran will be built for the national-religious community while the town of Kassif is to be marketed mainly to the strictly-Orthodox.

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Britain's ‘super’ university link with Israel

By Charlotte Oliver, November 14, 2013

Representatives from five British universities have travelled to Israel to explore the country’s academic opportunities for British students.

Officials from Nottingham, Sussex, City, Essex and Cardiff Universities — members of the UK Study in Israel Delegation — spent five days touring campuses, including the University of Haifa, Ben Gurion and the Technion Institute.

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Snowden files reveal tangled Israeli spy links

By Anshel Pfeffer, November 8, 2013

American National Security Agency (NSA) documents published by US and British newspapers in recent weeks reveal both the extent of American-Israeli intelligence co-operation but also the efforts by the Americans to keep tabs on Israeli operations.

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