World news

Mega-donors plan a Jewish Al-Jazeera

By Anshel Pfeffer, April 7, 2011

A group of Jewish philanthropists is planning to create an international television news channel to counter the influence of outlets like Al-Jazeera.

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Germany ups cash for Holocaust survivors

By Simon Rocker, April 7, 2011

The German government has pledged significant increases in contributions towards the care of Holocaust survivors following negotiations with the Claims Conference.

Julius Berman, chairman of the New York-based restitution body, said that the agreement was "vital" to addressing the growing welfare needs of ageing survivors.

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Dutch fears over vote on kosher meat

By Esther Voet, April 7, 2011

An international coalition of rabbis and Jewish leaders has joined the Dutch Jewish community in lobbying against a bill to ban shechitah, which is due to be voted on next week.

The proposal to ban all slaughter that does not involve any form of pre-stunning was introduced by the Party for Animals (PvdD).

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'Boycott Poland for dropping Holocaust restitution'

By Nissan Tzur, April 7, 2011

The polish government's decision to withdraw a restitution law that would have compensated thousands of people who lost property during the Holocaust has sparked a mixture of uproar and backpedalling in the Jewish world.

The WJC's general counsel, Menachem Rosensaft, last week called for an economic boycott of Poland until it adopts the law.

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Obama set for fresh Middle East peace drive

By Anshel Pfeffer, April 7, 2011

United States President Barack Obama told Israeli President Shimon Peres at a meeting in Washington this week that he is set to launch a fresh campaign to kick-start the peace process.

Speaking after the meeting, Mr Peres said: "Obama is prepared to launch a diplomatic initiative but only on the condition that it does not remain a one-time gesture."

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Concern for Israel as new Egypt emerges

By Anshel Pfeffer, April 7, 2011

Clouds are continuing to gather over Israel's relations with Egypt following the fall of the Mubarak regime.

On Sunday, in an interview with Egyptian state television, Foreign Minister Nabil Al-Arabi said that while Egypt remains committed to the peace accords it signed with Israel, they did not mean that the two countries should have warm relations.

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Barmitzvah boy funds Broadway musical on Liberty

By Jennifer Lipman, April 6, 2011

A barmitzvah boy has found an unusual solution to all the money he was given by guests at his party – he has donated it to the producers of a Broadway musical about immigrants.

New York teenager Jesse Naranjo is to use the more than £1,600 he was given following the ceremony last year to help send "Liberty: The Musical" to a major theatre.

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Top Democratic Party role for Jewish congresswoman

By Jennifer Lipman, April 6, 2011

A Jewish politician has been personally chosen by President Barack Obama to take on a senior role within the Democratic Party.

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Severed pig foot sent to Islam debate congressman

By Jennifer Lipman, April 5, 2011

A high-profile Republican politician has been sent a bloodied pig foot with an allegedly antisemitic note attached.

The package was sent to the Capitol Hill office of New York representative Peter King, a polarising figure in the US for his role chairing last month’s congressional hearings on radical Islam. It was discovered on Monday by security before it reached the congressman.

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Travelling rabbi battles killer bees in Zimbabwe

By Jennifer Lipman, April 4, 2011

A rabbi working to support the dwindling Jewish population of Zimbabwe is recovering after a killer bee attack.

Rabbi Moshe Silberhaft, a director of the African Jewish Congress, an umbrella organisation for Jewish communities in 13 countries, was in Harare on a Shabbat afternoon walk as part of a pre-Passover visit when a swarm of bees appeared from a hive beneath a wooden pole.

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