World news

Hungarian community in fear of extremist violence

By Thomas Land, May 21, 2010

The Hungarian Jewish Congress (HJC) has issued a desperate appeal to the mainstream political parties, asking them to prevent the new, extreme-Rightist deputies from turning the parliament into a theatre of antisemitic demonstrations.

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Extremists threats at Rahm Emanuel son's barmitzvah

By Simon Griver, May 21, 2010

White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel is in discussions with his family about whether to hold the barmitzvah of his son Zack in Israel next week after he received threats from right-wing extremists.

Mr Emanuel had told a conference in Washington last year that he was going to arrange the barmitzvah by the Western Wall in late May. Israel's Foreign Ministry received an enquiry in January from Mr Emanuel's office about the logistics.

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Diaspora critics rallying to challenge Israel

By Simon Rocker, Nathan Guttman and Marcus Dysch, May 21, 2010

Signs of growing diaspora discontent with Israeli policy have emerged with the launch of a petition by American Jewish figures calling for a settlement freeze and a compromise over Jerusalem's sovereignty.

For the Sake of Zion was inspired by a European initiative, JCall, headed by French Peace Now earlier this month.

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Jews for Jesus founder Moishe Rosen dies

By Jessica Elgot, May 21, 2010

The controversial founder of Jews for Jesus, Moishe Rosen, has died from prostate cancer, aged 78.

Mr Rosen was the most famous Jewish evangelist; having “found Jesus” aged 21. He and his wife made it a life-long mission to convert Jews to the teachings of Jesus. He died at his home in San Francisco, California.

Born in Denver, Colorado, Mr Rosen was rejected by his Jewish family after his decision to leave Judaism.

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Iran agrees nuclear deal with Brazil and Turkey

By Jessica Elgot, May 17, 2010

Iran has agreed to ship low enriched uranium to Turkey, but has said it will still continue to enrich uranium to up to 20 per cent.

After talks with Brazil and Turkey, Iran has agreed to exchange Iran’s stocks of enriched uranium in exchange for nuclear fuel rods, for use in scientific research.

Although nuclear weapons need uranium enriched to 90 per cent, the deal deprives Iran of its current stocks of enriched uranium, which could be used in future bomb production. Fuel rods cannot be processed any further than their current state.

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Wiesel: Outrage at Jerusalem letter

By Jessica Elgot, May 13, 2010

Nobel Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel has sparked outrage in Jerusalem for an open letter he wrote to US President Barack Obama urging him not to ‘politicise’ Jerusalem.

The American-based academic and Holocaust survivor wrote to President Obama: “For me, the Jew that I am, Jerusalem is above politics.

"It belongs to the Jewish people and is much more than a city, it is what binds one Jew to another in a way that remains hard to explain.

“The first song I heard was my mother's lullaby about and for Jerusalem. Its sadness and its joy are part of our collective memory."

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Historic Shanghai synagogue opens

By Erica Lyons, May 13, 2010

The Chinese government has permitted the temporary re-opening of the historic Ohel Rachel synagogue in Shanghai, one of only two synagogues in the city.

The Ohel Rachel building , which is 90 years old, was seized by the Communist government in 1952 and has been used as a storage facility ever since. It is currently in a state of disrepair but is still seen by Shanghai Jews as a spiritual focal point.

The re-opening, for six months only, is intended to coincide with the Shanghai Expo, which opened on May 1 and will end on October 31.

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Third Jew may join the US Supreme Court

By Nathan Guttman, May 13, 2010

If Elena Kagan, President Obama's choice for the US Supreme Court, is confirmed by the Senate, it will be the first time three woman justices are in the Supreme Court at the same time.

For the US Jewish community, Ms Kagan's appointment is another landmark. She will be the third Jew sitting Supreme Court justice, joining Ruth Bader-Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer.

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Mother-in-law jokes OK, court rules

May 13, 2010

An American federal court judge has defended one woman's right to make jokes about her mother-in-law.

Comic Sunda Croonquist, who is a regular on the Hollywood comedy circuit, was taken to court by her husband's mother, Ruth Zafrin, for allegedly spreading false, defamatory and racist lies about her.

Ms Croonquist, who is half-Swedish and half-black, converted to Judaism before she met her husband, and regularly jokes about her relationship with her mother-in law and sister-in-law.

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Israeli man's body found by picnickers

By Edward Doks, May 13, 2010

The mutilated body of a 25-year-old Israeli man has been found in Kiev by picnickers.

Arie Amigud Leibovich (also known as Stanislav Mizernov) disappeared three weeks ago after hosting a party with his flatmate.

Police have arrested a computer technician who has confessed to the murder and even reconstructed it for them.

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